Tag Archives: Placement fun

You think teaching is easy? Think again!

People who say teaching is the easy option need to come and do their placement in a school and have their eyes opened. As a placement student in school I’ve assumed the role of a teaching assistant, helping out in lessons with either less able or disruptive students. Unlike most teaching assistants I have specialist subject knowledge and can really challenge some of the students to learn more than ‘just enough to get them a pass’ which is what many students seem to aim for.
I’ve been on placement 3 months now, and have already learnt a great deal about teaching in general, and these are the things I would share with anyone looking at doing teaching after they graduate like I am.
1. Never show weakness – I’m pretty sure the students can smell fear on you. In my first week I was told that I have full teaching rights and to give out detentions if I feel they are needed. But I was not confident enough to do this and discipline properly, and they could tell I was new. As the weeks went on and I grew in confidence and learnt how to speak to the kids they learnt that I meant business! Now, they do listen to me, and if I set a detention, I’m not bluffing but mean it.
2. Children are nosey – No matter how many times I’ve told them I’m a university student, they always ask if I’m a real teacher. They ask how old I am, if I have children and if I’m married. Most of the time, they’re asking these questions because they’re bored or they just don’t want to learn. Don’t fall into the trap of answering these questions, as they’ll always find more to ask. I did like making them guess my age until one year 11 student said I looked 30… being 21, this was NOT what I wanted to hear.
3. They will not do as much work with a cover teacher – FACT, and I remember this from when I was at school. To even the best behaved students, cover teacher = easy lesson. Sometimes, just getting certain students through a lesson with a cover teacher without any other teachers having to remove them is an achievement, even if all they write is the date and the title.
4. Small arguments will be the end of the world for year 7s – In year 7, there is a huge difference in maturity, and it’s very obvious. Some students still think that, like in primary school, arguments will be sorted by the teacher, but most teachers don’t have time to monitor every small friendship issue. They will sort it in the end. They will learn.
5. You will not just be a teacher – As a teacher and especially as a form tutor (Which I am to a year 7 group) you assume the role of many other people. You’re a parent figure to some children with difficult home lives. You give advice and guide them in things that happen outside school. You council students who are struggling with friendships or find school life difficult. You’re a doctor, trying to decipher when a student is ill or ‘ill’ because they don’t want to do a test. And alongside teaching your main job is that you are a role model, teaching students not only the curriculum, but how to be a good person and how to grow into a good adult.

Final semester at SEK

The third and final semester of my placement here in Madrid has been eventful. A lot has been going on at school and I’ve done some exciting activities during this time. Work has been busy because the academic year is coming to an end so we’re having to sort out all the end of year grades, evaluations etc. The weather has drastically changed and we’re not in out high 20 degrees every single day – so nice! This is probably the one thing I will miss the most when I leave! ^^’

El Escorial – farm school : 27.04 – 29.04 

So, I got rewarded a two night three day school trip to the farm school back in May for my consistent hard work. My teacher and co-ordinator suggested this idea and I couldn’t have been happier. I was thankful and grateful that they managed to do this for me. I had such a great few days spending time with my teachers outside of the classroom! We had good food and spent the days laughing at the talking parrots ^^’ I’ll always be grateful for this reward because it showed that hard work really does pay off and it never goes unnoticed.

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Madrid Zoo Aquarium : May 2nd 

Since the weather was getting better, I decided to take a trip to Madrid’s zoo/aquarium! It was only 20 euros for entrance to both the zoo AND aquarium – bargain right?! It’s definitely worth a visit… we saw lots of animals, including BEARS!

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Madrid Open 2016 QF : 05.05

One of the highlights of my placement is watching Nadal play tennis live! I watched him play in the Madrid Open semi finals and it was amazing. The atmosphere was amazing! It’s such a shame that he lost in the semi finals but nevertheless, I still got to see him play 🙂 the stadium was very cool.

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Faunia : 26.05

Last Thursday, I went on yet another school trip to Faunia which was like a small zoo for children! My class are currently learning about animals so it was perfect for them to go and investigate about all the different animals that exist. This was my final school trip with my class and it was bitter sweet. I’ve been on 4 trips with these kids and I’ve loved every single one. Nothing beats seeing them smile so much when they’re away from the class ^^’

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As you can see, I’ve had quite a busy final semester… and I’ve been having such a great time! It’s sad to think that it’ll all be over in a matter of days!

Tiffany

 

 

 

 

 

It’s not ALL about working or studying!

Yes, your primary purpose of your YA is to work or study but it’s not all about just studying or working. Your 9-5, 5 days a week might be the norm but the weekends, public holidays are for you to go out and venture! If travelling and trying new things are right up your street, then this is your time to shine. Don’t be one of those boring students who refuse to move off their bottoms ^^’

Here in Spain, I’ve had quite a few long weekends (public holidays) which has allowed me to travel to different cities in Spain – perfect! I have lived here for 7 months now and I feel very content with the things I have done, places I’ve visited, up until now.

Valencia 
Not long after I first moved to Spain, my roommate and I took a very spontaneous trip to Valencia. Literally, one day after work we decided to book our journey there and our accommodation…if I remember correctly, it took us just 30 minutes to get everything sorted. We went back in September so the weather was still pretty warm/hot! The food and beach were beautiful!

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Segovia 

Segovia was a small historical town that didn’t offer a lot but the buildings and architecture there was absolutely breathtaking. We were able to have lunch just by the 2,000 year old Roman Aqueduct and enjoy the good weather.

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Barcelona

My roommate’s family were visiting Barcelona so we decided to pop over too! It took us two and a half hours to get there by train and our train tickets cost…a lot! But it was so worth it. I was able to see so many things and try new food. This is the life you want to live! Oh and I even got to visit Camp Nou football stadium 🙂

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Cuenca 

Again, Cuenca was a very small city that really cool aspects to it. The city is known for its ‘hanging houses’ …though we only saw the one ^^’ the red bridge in the photos below was extremely high! >__< and I have a huge fear of bridges… so yes, I soldiered on with my eyes closed, gripping onto my roommate.

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Toledo 

Toledo was our most recent day trip out and it was a really nice day. The sun was out to play and it made our day that much better. All these small cities are very beautiful ~ though there isn’t much to do there at all, it’s just nice to do some walking in the peace and quiet where you can see amazing sculptured buildings left, right and center.

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So, this is what I have been up to so far during my placement – visiting other nearby cities and trying to try new things all the time. Not only have I visited other cities, but I’ve discovered some really cool places in central Madrid too which I’ll update you guys on soon, for those of you who are looking for a placement in Madrid 🙂

Spain has so much to offer so I would definitely recommend doing  your year abroad here! ~

Tiffany

 

Feria de Abril

Hola chicos y chicas 🙂

How are you? Preparing for exams? Writing essays? I know it’s hard and boring, but it’s worth it. If you have secured a placement, congratulations. If you are still looking for one, don’t get stressed ( remember what I told you about your brain cells). I only secured my placement in July which means that you still have time. Focus on your exams and  assignments then you can worry about one of the best years of your life.

On this blogpost, I’m going to tell you about the Feria de Abril. One of the bests if not the best event in Seville. It usually happens 2 weeks after Semana Santa and it is the total opposite. I’m not going to write that much because I think the pictures will do all the talking.

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The Feria de Abril usually starts with a procession around the city centre. Sevillians love the Feria as it is more relaxed than the Semana Santa.

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They have a parade of horses to announce the start of the Feria.

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The horses usually have ornaments in their face as you can see in this picture.

 

 

 

 

 

cruzcampo

The city is decorated with reminders of the Feria. Cruzcampo, which is one of the main beer companies in Spain, is the main provider of the reminders.

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The inside of a bus stop.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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The Feria officially starts when they switch one the lights of the entrance at midnight. The Feria is that important, that the event is even televised.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The entrance during the daytime.

The entrance during the daytime.

 

 

 

 

 

 

family in carriage

During the day you can see the carriages and you can go in one. You can also see horse riders .

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They ride the horses the old-fashioned way.

 

 

 

 

 

 

drinking

They are so used to riding the horses, that they even drink whilst on a horse.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

flamencas

All the girls wear flamenco dresses, which can be quite expensive. For you to have an idea, some girls pay 800 euros for a dress.

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caseta

In the Feria they have a number of casetas. Casetas are little houses where you can get a drink or some food. They also have a DJ or a band.

 

 

 

 

 

 

private casetas

The casetas can be private or public. If they are private, you need to know one of the partners that will let you in, otherwise you have to go to a public one.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Me and the girls in a public caseta.

 

 

 

 

 

 

plaza de toros

The Feria also represent the beginning of the Bullfights’ events.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Feria was one of the highlights of my placement year because since I got here, I always said that I wanted to wear a flamenco dress and the Feria gave me the opportunity to do so. Now, you can see some pictures of me on my flamenco dress.

 

 

Me and the girls from the office.

Me and the girls from the office. (Celia and Lilly)

Me and my flatmate.

Me and my flatmate.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Me and Julia (One of the ladies from the office. I call her Pocahontas)

Me and Julia (One of the ladies from the office. I call her Pocahontas)

Me and Nastja (one of the interns in the office).

Me and Nastja (one of the interns in the office).

Julia (a.k.a Pocahontas) taught me how to dance the sevillana, however I will not post the video of me dancing. In this picture you notice the details of the mantocillo ( the scarf she has in her chest)

Julia (a.k.a Pocahontas) taught me how to dance the sevillana, however I will not post the video of me dancing. In this picture you can notice the details of the mantocillo  ( the scarf she has in her chest) thata the traditional girls wear.

Ladies dancing the Sevillana

Ladies dancing the Sevillana

 

Ladies dancing the Sevillana in a private caseta.

Ladies dancing the Sevillana in a private caseta.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Feria finished with a firework show. To be honest I’m really sad because I really enjoyed the Feria. Everyone was so happy and relaxed and ready to have fun. If I come back to Seville ( which I will) it will be during the Feria as it is the best time to be here. If you come to do your placement in Spain, take a week off during the Feria and come to Seville.

I wanted to say thank you to all the girls for letting me post these pictures, especially to Celia for taking some of the photos.

Good Luck with your exams and assignments and I will come back next month with some placement advice.

Until then,
Hasta Luego 🙂

The adventures of a placement student

Hola chicos y chicas !!!!

I know it has been a while but I hope everything is going well with your placement search.On this blog post I will be telling you about my new adventure.  YYYYYYEEEEEEAAAAHHHHHH.So, I red in this article that people that like to travel a lot have this gene called wanderlust gene. I think mine has started to manifest as now I’m always travelling or planning trips. So, this time I went to Africa.

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I spent 4 days in busy Marrakech and I can tell you that I would definitely go back, just for shopping. Marrakech is completely different to every place that I have been and as soon as I got there I got a cultural shock. There were donkeys on the road, people crossing the road without looking, motorcycles everywhere with the whole family on top. Different stairs, cats everywhere and people calling all sorts of things just to get your attention ( They called me Shakira, like, do I look like Shakira). I was shocked.

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10 things to know about London

Since coming back from Christmas work has been quite quiet. Mainly because I have spent the past month or so laid up in bed sick but also because we’re just catching up from the madness of Christmas.

So I have put Aladdin on the TV and will give you a bit of an insight into what it is like to move to the capital city.. The big smog… LDN!

1. Zebra crossings just aren’t a thing. The cars, buses, cyclists or bin lorries don’t care for them and you actually risk your life on them every day. The scene where Regina George in Mean Girls is mowed down by the school bus is something I face every day!

2. The tubes aren’t that bad. They are convenient, when they are running, and are quite pleasant when you get a seat. Just make sure you anti bac your whole body after getting off.

3. Tourists spots become a bit of a no-go and the famous Oxford Street becomes a place you will do anything to avoid.

4. Going to the bar, pub, anywhere that serves alcohol is extremely normal after work and is actually just part of the day, like lunch time!

5. Housing is very expensive. I pay twice as much as what I did in halls and four times as much as what I did in 2nd year.

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How to make a wish come true!

Snow White

Landing your perfect placement can be an absolute dream. You can end up working with the perfect team, in a beautiful city and doing an exceptional job! That is exactly what happened to me, but this isn’t about my wish. I thought I would tell you how I made a little girl’s wish come to true to meet Snow White.

It was a cold Sunday morning and a very early start with a drive to the Disney Store. Once there, we waited for the family to arrive with their own special princess. This little girl was extremely ill but had been treated to a princess birthday party the day before and then today meeting Snow White!

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using your initiative

initiative… A hard word to spell, well for me anyway- however so important on this placement.

As an assistant you have to be prepared to be told what needs to be done, and then get it done. However this isn’t the only role you have within your assistant role.

You have to remember you are a new pair of eyes, a fresh face, and an imaginative person. If you can see something which your work place would benefit from, talk about it, set it up… As long as your supervisor doesn’t say no.

This is exactly what I’ve done. Myself and the Research Assistant (Rose) have set up our very own “clinical reference and reflection group” (Basically a posh name for a group which meets weekly to talk about clinical things and topics and teach each other about them). This week I am preparing a pack on anger and anger management using resources such as self help guides to teach other people within the service about the topic, and in turn this could help a client! Positive!

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Myself and Rose 🙂

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Year Abroad Ideas: Making a Memory Book

Working hard or studying hard is a big part of placement year abroad, after time it can be easy to forget to appreciate what a truly amazing experience and adventure it is! Living abroad for a year means visiting new places, meeting new people, making new memories and inevitably taking a HELL of a lot of photographs  (All instagram-aholics raise your hand now).

Don’t get me wrong having your photos online is a great way to save them (and of course make everyone jealous of your fab new life overseas) but after visiting a friend who is a keen traveller I was inspired by the cute way she collects things from the places she has visited and saves them into a little scrapbook.

Saving your receipts, coasters, maps and leaflets of special memories and combining them with your pictures makes for a super personal way to remember your year abroad. Its something special to look back on, a way to appreciate the experiences you had and to remember the moments you might not have photos of.

It might take a little bit longer than changing your instagram filter, but the results are certainly worth it. So  grab that prit stick and get creative!

Germany memory book

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Placement Highlights

4 months left to go until the end of my study abroad period and I can’t help but to wish I could stay here for longer. There are so many good things about my placement.

1. THE PEOPLE
The idea of having to live by myself for a whole year in a city that I’ve only been to with my family of course scared me. And even reading the past blogs from former exchange students didn’t make me feel any better. I barely coped with moving into my home uni, I didn’t know how I would cope with HK….but the thing is, I did. I pushed myself to meet new people and speak to new people in my classes and now, I can say that I have made a bunch of really good friends who I will definitely keep in contact with when I return home. I have made friends from all around the world from America to Japan, and from China to even UK. As we are all exchange students we are all open minded about befriending each other, and to go on outings together. We can see each other a lot in the events, through our own activities and even in classes. We have a FB group where people ask questions, from where a building is to providing details about a trip somewhere. Exchange will definitely lead to a friendly group of people!

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Hiking trip with friends

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Playing cards with friends

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