In the name of Allah, Lord of this World and the Hereafter.
Alhamdulillah, praise be to Allah for the opportunity He still giving me -- to breathe in oxygen and make some difference in other people's life as a teacher. And alhamdulillah too because I managed to go through my first two weeks of practicum.
I - Record
The first week of practicum was a bit messy and tiring for me. Settling down is no easy task: I have to get used to the new environment, have to get to know the permanent teachers in school as well as my students in two different classes, preparing lesson and completing the record book, relieving classes, and do anything the school administrators asked me to do without any complaints. When you are still a trainee, these are the things you have to face and endure, patiently.
The second week was better than the first week. Well, it should be better unless I was playing around. Naturally. I have gotten closer with my Form 4 students and they are more like friends to me than students. But my Form 2 students are still . . . let's not talk about it yet. I did not have much contact hours with them so I could not improve much. But overall, second week was better. I was observed by Mr. Harbinder and he said I have good classroom control and teacher's presence -- something which I was graded low for microteaching. Really, microteaching and actual classroom are very different and I prefer the former much better. :')
II - Reflection
I admit it: There are times when I was disillusioned - I ask myself whether or not I have what it takes to teach students of whose population is 70 percent Chinese. Yes, this is something new for me having been raised in a religious school with no other races in my learning environment. There are times when I was stressed and depressed when people put too much or too high of an expectations on me. I was so used to do things at my own pace but with expectations, one has to keep up with other people's pace.
But always; even when you feel disillusioned and downtrodden, there are things that will keep you going. For me, it is the joy of being a teacher itself: I always feel rejuvenated whenever I see passion and enthusiasm in my students' eyes. Sometimes, their little acts and gestures of kindness are the things that make my resolve stronger.
Every time I plan a lesson, I will remind myself:
Chouji, do not plan your lessons because you want to impress the supervisors. Plan your lessons - make them fun and meaningful - for your students, so they will have motivation to learn English and want to learn. By making them want to learn, you can touch their heart and mind and make a difference in their life.
Which reminds me of an advice from Mrs. Tan Siew Yen, one of our cooperating teachers in SMK Bukit Jalil:
"Teach, how you want to be taught."
Simple advice with deep meaning. Don't you think? :')
"So lose not heart, nor fall into despair: For ye must gain mastery if ye are true in Faith."[Ali 'Imran, 3:139]
So to myself, teacher trainees and all beginning teachers, be strong and patient with all the trials before us. Never lose heart nor give up because it is our responsibility to gain mastery of what we do. As a teacher, and as a good Muslim. :')
-p/s: And owh, I have two observations next week. Pray the best for me, and that I will be sincere in teaching my students, not for my evaluation.
"O Allah! In Thy Cause I hope to strive and gain mastery of what I can and must do, so help me and ease my path to attain Thy Pleasure."