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Professional Milestones - Element 1

Element 1 - Teachers know their subject content and how to teach that content to their students.

Knowledge of subject content

1.1.1 - Demonstrate relevant knowledge of the central concepts, modes of enquiry and structure of the content/discipline(s).

Knowledge of pedagogy

1.1.2 - Demonstrate research-based knowledge of the pedagogies of the content/discipline(s) taught.

Knowledge of NSW curriculum requirements

1.1.3 - Design and implement lesson sequences using knowledge of the NSW syllabus documents or other curriculum requirements of the Education Act.

Knowledge of information and communication technologies (ICT) in the following areas:

1.1.4 - Demonstrate current knowledge and proficiency in the use of the following:

  • Basic operational skills
  • Information technology skills
  • Software evaluation skills
  • Effective use of the internet
  • Pedagogical skills for classroom management

I have enthusiasm and a thorough knowledge of all KLA areas, and have had experience teaching all KLA areas, including creating and implementing a Science & Technology Unit of work, and teaching all strands of Creative Arts, not just Visual Arts. I have engaged in a variety of extra curricular activities such as PSSA AFL, and lunchtime dance group which were both voluntary. I have used a variety of questioning techniques and open ended critical thinking tasks to encourage inquiry learning and stimulate learning across ability levels. I have implemented a constructivist approach to learning where students are provided with hands on opportunities to develop their own ideas. I have developed a range of ICT skills including using a Moodle, creating a Wiki, briefly using a Smartboard, creating Powerpoints, using Box.Net as an alternative to using individual USB’s in the classroom, and creating websites using Educator Pages. All of these ICT modes are not just for teachers, but rather, accessible to students in order to give them a sense of ownership, and increase engagement levels and motivation. I have evaluated resources written to teach Indigenous perspectives in the classroom in terms of being culturally appropriate and their relevance within the classroom. I have taken risks with my teaching, especially on my last practicum with a combined class of 65 students. Some of these risks include tye-dyeing, hands on mathematics lessons, and persisting with comprehension skills in a class of low level literacy ability. All of these risks presented challenges in terms of resourcing and classroom management.  

I need to experience teaching subject content to younger stages as I have had minimal experience on practicum in Stage 1 and no experience in Early Stage 1. I need to improve my knowledge base of organised sports so that I am able to teach them with confidence. I also need more experience with Smartboards in the classroom, in terms of how to use them as an effective learning tool and integrate them into a regular lesson. I need to draw upon the skills and knowledge base of other teachers within my practicum school so I am exposed to a broad range of teaching techniques and strategies.  

I will improve my scope and broaden my experiences within the classroom by teaching casual work across all stage in second semester after I receive my interim approval from the DET. I will immerse myself in as much sport as I can on my next practicum and try and introduce some alternatives such as aerobics. As I consider the KLA of PDHPE to be my personal weakness in the classroom, I take the approach of learning with the students and placing the emphasis on fitness, fun, and enthusiasm and maximum participation rather than focusing on the win/lose factor of organised sports. I will try and integrate ICT in an authentic way across the curriculum in a school where ICT is not present in all classrooms.  

I believe technology is the key to education in the future, and that we as teachers have a responsibility to our students to incorporate ICT into the classroom. Incorporating ICT into the classroom creates to pedagogical diversity and it is by diversifying the curriculum and the methods in which it is taught that students become more active and more engaged in their learning (Fleer & Jane, 2004, pp.104-111). I believe that having a sound knowledge base is the key to becoming a great teacher; however this should not be used as a source of power to reign over the students. I believe, rather than always having the answers the teachers should be willing to admit what they don’t know and endeavour to learn along with the students.

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