Placement Journal/Reflection- Week 1

So I have just completed my first week for my final year placement – if I am going to sum it up in a few words, it is fair to say ‘It’s been AWESOME!

But I suppose soon as this is a blog post which I will be using to help me reflect I think I may need to write a few more words than that.. So this is how my week unfolded …


We had a student free day @ school so we had some professional development as a team
Our staff PD focused on affective sentences and restorative justice. We also looked at sites like KidsMatter for information that could be used to assist parents.


This is an example of what an affective statement looks like – All the steps are assigned a behaviour which could occur if that step is missed.

This day for me was brilliant, not only seeing the types of PD days that schools may run as a staff, but for someone coming into the profession, it was very helpful.


The kids came back to school today, and were very excited to be there 🙂
I only took Jolly Phonics on tuesday so that I could be slowly eased into the routine and teaching.
Staff meeting followed at the end of the day where Student Support Plans were the focus. Once again for me this was helpful to see how it all works; it was also helpful because I got to see how the teachers and the school as a whole differentiates – As part of Flinders I have to completed a differentiation portfolio while I am on my placement.


Wednesday was definitely a bigger day for me in terms of teaching load.

I began a new unit with them where I introduced narrative and in particular fairy tales.
We focused on The Gingerbread Man for the week. My first lesson we focused on a cloze exercise which followed a story as as well strategies they can use to read a word if they were unsure.
We completed the cloze as a class first so that I could scaffold their learning, then the students moved back to their desks and completed their own.

— I was happy with how this lesson went and the majority of the students could work alone with minimal help/supervision.

I then moved into jolly phonics with them.

After recess we had fun and games and a computing lesson which my mentor teachers lead and I assisted along with the SSO.

After lunch it was all me again. I continued to work the my narrative: fairytale unit – this time we focused on the characters; firstly what is a character then we moved into emotions.

This lesson we used De Bonos Red Thinking Hat: Feelings to think about how the character  of the little old lady from the gingerbread man would’ve felt at certain points of the story.

I used emotion cards to help the students identify some of the emotions.
Blank Face

 I also used this time to have a mini art lesson to where we focused on how to draw faces e.g.: We need to draw the detail now; eyebrows, eye lashes, teeth etc.

I split the class up into their table groups and assigned each table an emotion to draw into the faces.

The students loved this lesson which I was very happy about. Here are their finished products…


Next thing the students had finished their faces so it was time for me to think on my feet..
I decided to take the students outside for a game of fruit salad with a twist; instead giving the students a fruit, they were the characters from The Gingerbread Man.
– The Gingerbread Man
– The little old lady
– The little old man
– The Fox

They loved this .. I also integrated some maths into the game with clockwise and anticlockwise as we are currently completed a maths unit on clocks.
To finish the day we just closed with sharing

So I went to taking 1 lesson being Jolly Phonics to taking 2/3 of the day .. I loved it 🙂


This was another big day for me again, I started a new mini unit for maths.
We started learning about graphs and what they are used for.

As a class we used 4 different types of cookies (including a gingerbread man 😀 ) to create a class pictograph.


Students picked their favourite cookie type – coloured it in, and stuck it on our class graph.. Here is our final graph, we then discussed the results as a class


I will be continuing this unit. We will be making our own graphs next week 🙂

I also took Jolly Phonics lesson: which was ‘sh’ – the following pictures shows our task 🙂


The students had sport and art after lunch so I had some planning time with the 2 reception teachers.


My mentor teacher was out from recess till there was an hour left of the day so I had my school supervisor observing me for that period. It was definitely interesting to see the difference of how the students acted when their teacher wasn’t in the room.

They were testing me so I taught them a new rhyme to make to stop

‘Hands on Top’ (teacher)
‘That means stop’ (students)

This worked great .. It got them to stop fiddling when I was talking.

I took them for maths – Days of the week and counting up to 20 and backwards from 10 .. (I also threw in a bit of clockwise and anticlockwise for a little teachable moment as we were sitting in a circle) The students played snakes and ladders so practice their counting and for some fun..
But then the real fun began .. We made gingerbread men!!
The dough was already made and rolled for them so they cut them out and used raisins for their eyes.

Throughout the rest of the we iced our gingerbread men and decorated them with sprinkles… completed a ‘ch’ booklet that they could take home.

We then watched the gingerbread man on the IWB.. That didn’t take as long as I thought so once again thought on my feet (lucky I am good at it!) and we had a bit of fun with drama. The students walked around the room showing me an emotion.. We used the same emotion as our face drawing task earlier in the week. We then simply finished off the day with some sharing to relax the students.

And that is week one done. I am feeling confident and I have had discussions with my mentor teacher after every lesson run of things that I could try to improve on .. These include lowering my voice for instructions and reinforcing good behaviour once I have asked them to behave a certain way.. Which I began doing the lesson after anyway 🙂

I say bring on the next 5 weeks .. I’m loving it 😀


About jessottewell

4th Yr Educ Student @ flinders BA/Bed R-7
This entry was posted in Education, Engage Professionally, Feedback, Know Students, Know the Content, Plan Teaching and Learning, Professional Learning, Report, Supportive and Safe Learning and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to Placement Journal/Reflection- Week 1

  1. Awesome, I’m loving reading what you’ve been up to 🙂 Hope that Panaboard’s in your room and it’s getting a work out 😉

  2. jessottewell says:

    We did have one in the classroom and yes it did get used 🙂 Only when it accelerated their learning though 🙂
    Check me out over at
    I have been converted 🙂 (As in free year membership on premium 🙂 hehe)

    Looking forward to seeing your face around uni next semester

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