Three weeks into my PGCE and this is my first blog in bloody ages. If only someone had warned me that this course would be so time consuming! I'm already into my second placement (the first was seven days in a primary school - eek!) and have spent hours and hours reading and annotating educational theorists' theories and Ofsted reports. I've observed good, bad and indifferent lessons, met some inspiring practitioners, spent half my bursary on printer ink and have now, thankfully, managed to overcome my shyness and forge some fledgling friendships with fellow students.
The course itself seems excellent. A varied programme of guests, tasks, workshops and lectures has rarely been anything other than illuminating - and has often been thoroughly good fun. My personal tutors (a job-sharing combo of avuncular idealist and maternal pragmatist) are utterly wonderful and, other than the token loud-mouthed irritant, the other student teachers are a decent bunch. I'm the eldest by a good few years, and although there are a couple more 'mature' students, the vast majority are fresh from university. I've yet to succumb to the temptation of going out on one of their regular post-lecture boozing sessions.
The workload has been enormous, with reams of reading to be done, auditing of our own subject knowledge to be completed, spelling and grammar tests, refelective journals, literature reviews and various other tasks to be completed. I'm keeping up admirably, but it's soon time for our first major essay and my first foray into masters-level academic writing. I'm shitting my pants at the prospect - it's a long time since my dissertation on how Napster would change the way we consumed music* - and i've done nothing similar in scope or scale since. I'll need plenty of help with it.
* Reading it again, my dissertation could have been written by Nostradamus. It predicted the rise of mySpace, Spotify, artists giving music away for free, online-only albums and various other digital music innovations. I'd like to have it retrospectively re-marked so that it got the grade it clearly deserved rather than the 2:1 it was awarded.