Good day everyone and welcome to issue # 10, only 2 issues remaining after this one. The weather continues to be fairly mild in these parts and there wasn’t much to the predicted “storm” we had Saturday night. Might we “knock on wood” when we say that! Enjoy the issue.
Feedback From This Year’s Interns
Drawing parallels between the profession of teaching and my former occupation of being a waiter
Over the course of my internship I have frequently found myself drawing parallels between the profession of teaching, and my former occupation of being a waiter at a restaurant.
When I am up in the front of a class, I often look out and see not a classroom of students, but 25 hungry and expecting tables of one. This idea in my head has ballooned so that I now consider the learning outcomes the same as I considered the special of the day when I was a waiter.
My job was to entice the customer into buying it, or in the sense of the classroom, interest the students in the topic enough so that they want to learn more. When I am in the prep room, I am no longer preparing a lesson that the students will understand in the span of an hour.
Now I am preparing a meal that the patrons will find palatable. This involves cutting up the steak (which is the special of the day today) into bite size pieces, or breaking down the concept into simple and concise fragments. Then I have to season the steak so that they can not only get it into their mouth and chew it but have it taste good at the same time. This pertains to making the lesson interesting and engaging for the students.
While I thought I could get away from the service industry by getting into the education program at MUN, it seems I was sorely mistaken. Let’s just hope the tips at the end of the day are alright and the online reviews not too scathing! (Secondary Intern)
Returning to a school I once attended
The internship has been great so far. It’s really interesting returning to a school that I once attended as a student.
I am really surprised with how quickly I have gained a sense of belonging within the school. Having this shift in perspective from being a student to being an intern has allowed me to have a better appreciation of the sense of community within the school.
With time beginning to dwindle I have realized that I am going to miss many of the students and the other teachers. It’s amazing how so many great connections can be made in such little time.
I guess this is something we will all face as teachers at the end of every school year when our classes move on to the next grade level. With that in mind, it is important to reflect on the positive side of things and I am more than thankful that this has been such a great experience.
My internship this far has been absolutely amazing. I have been teaching full time for two weeks now and so far it is so much fun and I can really see myself loving this profession.
I love my class, the students are so eager to learn and try new things. Currently we are doing Little Green Thumbs in our classroom and the kids have absolutely fallen in love with the project and watching the plants grow!
I am so upset however because this internship is flying by so fast and I have become so at home in my school and with the teachers that when April 15th comes around I will be very sad to go.
I do, however, feel very confident that when I leave my internship and complete my degree that I will be returning to my school for visits on a regular basis. It’s been a blast! (Primary Intern)
They never fail to surprise me
I am SO enjoying my time with the students. They never fail to surprise me. Whether it be something kind they do when they think nobody is looking, maybe something insightful that I never thought would come from a Grade 8 student, or sometimes it is as simple as them coming to school every day ready to learn. It is times like these that I know I am in the right place.
We had an overnight ski trip last night and it was such a good experience. It was a solid 24 hours with the students and it was great for bonding and getting to know the students and staff in a way that just wouldn’t be possible in the classroom. We skied 10 km each day and had a bonfire and movie in the evening. Felt more like play than work!
While that was a good experience, there was also a more frightening one that happened this week as well. I am only aware of it because the student is one that I teach – no other staff have been informed other than her teachers and assistants that now need to work with her. But she made some threats regarding her classmates so now there is an intense intervention/handoff plan in place. She cannot be alone at any time. She must be escorted to and from class by an adult, has to spend recess in the office, and must be supervised at noon. This is a situation I had never even heard of so it has been quite the learning experience so far.
On The Lighter Side of Teaching (Part 1)
“I know it’s a half a day. . . but which half?”
Recommended Book Resource for Primary & Elementary Interns
Allan Ahlberg (2007)
Illustrated by Bruce Ingman
This delightful tale is even more enjoyable when readers and listeners are familiar with fairy tales. It begins with Goldilocks arriving home “all bothered and hot”, because “previously” she had climbed out of someone’s window and run home, and “previously she had been sleeping in somebody else’s bed”. And, “previously she had bumped into a hurtling and older boy named…”
And so begins a reading adventure as children guess who might Goldilocks have run into. What is the name of the boy who appears in so many fairy tales and nursery rhymes? No other than Jack himself, who “previously had climbed up the beanstalk” and previous to that “had come tumbling down the high hill with his argumentative little sister…”
Jill, who previously had been eating breakfast when she saw a small green… Frog who was wearing a crown. Previously he had been… A Prince, but a wicked fairy had put a spell on him. “Previously he had fallen in love with a disappearing girl named…
Cinderella, with whom he had danced at the ball. Previously, when walking in the woods on her day off she “had been bumped into by”… The Gingerbread Boy who was being chased by…
And the tale continues with readers laughing at the many twists in the story, intermingling historical fairy tales with modern perks such as the Prince driving his white Mercedes. Bruce Ingman’s acrylic paintings are bright, inviting, and childlike. Young children and older alike will enjoy this backward tale that takes readers through both familiar and new plots.
On The Lighter Side of Teaching (Part 2)
“Grade A! You’re such a good egg!”
Education Law Corner
One of the topics we study in our Education Law courses
(undergraduate and graduate) here in our Faculty of Education is that of teacher misconduct.
As a result of having studied teacher misconduct in 2 Canadian provinces, Ontario and British Columbia, yours truly has developed a categorization of teacher misconduct in Canada. Those 4 categories are as follows:
Category 1: Misconduct occurring in the classroom, the school building and school grounds and at the school board office.
Category 2: Misconduct of a sexual nature.
Category 3: Misconduct of a commercial crime nature occurring at the school building or at the school board office. And lastly,
Category 4: Misconduct occurring in the community at large which may/may not be of a criminal nature.
Category 1 refers to misbehavior conducted by teachers which could be directed at students or colleagues. Examples might range from verbal or physical abuse of students, verbal abuse of colleagues in front of students to a failure to competently teach the prescribed curriculum to students. At the school board office, misbehavior could take on the form of professional staff refusing to fulfill their job duties as prescribed in their job descriptions to unethical and unprofessional exchanges about and between colleagues.
Category 2 refers to sexual abuse by teachers and according to some writers in this area has been defined as the following:
Sexual abuse may involve a range of behaviors that are often
grouped into the broader category of sexual misconduct. Experts in this area who refer to sexual misconduct include such behaviors as physical contact (kissing, touching, fondling, and oral, anal and vaginal penetration), verbal communication (sexually-related conversations, jokes, questions, personal information, and harassment), visual communication (webcam communication, sharing pictures of a sexual nature), and possession or creation of child pornography.
Category 3 refers to activity whereby a teacher, school administrator or other educator is involved in the misuse of monies entrusted to the school or school board. The most common types in this category are theft, fraud and the misappropriation of funds.
Category 4 involves behavior committed by educators not physically in schools or at school board offices but in the community at large. This behavior may or may not contravene the Criminal Code of Canada but nevertheless brings disrepute or shame to the conduct and reputation of teachers in general.
In next week’s issue, we’ll take a specific look at Category
2 – misconduct of a sexual nature.
The author is continuing his study titled “Educators’ Perceptions of the Characteristics of Effective Principals”. If you are currently a teacher in the Newfoundland and Labrador school system (private or public) and are interested in participating, please go to the following website:
The survey should take approximately 20 minutes to complete. This study is also open to all retired teachers in this province.
If you participate and would like to be entered into a draw for an Apple iPad Mini 2 WiFi 32GB (valued at $359.00), please follow the instructions in that section of the website.
International Teaching Positions
Maple Leaf Educational Systems, a Canadian company, operates a number of schools in China. If you are interested in the possibility of teaching in China, please go to their website:
Further information can be obtained by contacting Mr. Archie MacEachern (Teacher Recruitment Representative for Atlantic Canada)
Another company, Randstad Education, is currently recruiting teachers for jobs in the United Kingdom. For further information, please contact Ms. Emily Brady (firstname.lastname@example.org).
As mentioned a few weeks ago, interns, if you have emailed in a submission for the eMEMO and it has not yet been published in one of our issues, please email the author and advise him of same. This is an oversight as all submissions are published; the only editing that is done is the occasional spelling or grammatical error.
For example, the submission on page 1 of last week’s issue titled “There are indeed some rough spots. . .” is one that was missed by the author. Thank you to this intern for bringing that to our attention – very much appreciated.
Former Student Update
Received the following email last Sunday from former student, Chris Doyle who graduated this past October with his B. Ed. (I/S) degree:
Substituting has been going really well for me! So well, in fact, that it makes it near impossible to stop by and visit Maurice up in the TLC and my former Education professors, but I suppose that too many teaching days is a good complaint to have. Sadly, it will be even harder for me to drop by since I just accepted my first replacement!
I interviewed for a position a few weeks ago, and last week they called and offered me a job. Within the week, I found a place to live and I just moved to Grand Falls-Windsor yesterday. Today I visited the school which I will begin teaching at tomorrow until the end of the school year: Hillview Academy in Norris Arm. I did not have a chance to go inside, but I took a couple photos for posterity, and have attached one to this message. Wish me luck tomorrow.
Former Student Feedback
I was in the Intermediate/Secondary class of 2014-2015. I still get the weekly eMEMOs and thought I would drop a line today to say hello and to let you know how much it cheers me to read these newsletters. My internship may have been two years ago but reading stories from current interns makes me at once very nostalgic and very excited for these students as they move forward in their careers. They have a wonderful example in their professors in the Faculty of Education.
As for me, I moved back to my hometown, Twillingate, a little less than a year ago and have begun substitute teaching here whenever I can. I am also working at the local public library as a tech assistant for the general public. I have to say that my Education degree definitely put me on the right life path.
Best regards – Sarah Carter
On The Lighter Side of Teaching (Part 3)
“I don’t think that’s appropriate for a junior high teacher, Mr. Forbes!”
Concluding Comment From The Editor
That concludes issue # 10. Again our thanks to those interns who sent in submissions for this issue – much appreciated. A special word of thank you to former B. Ed. students, Sarah Carter and Chris Doyle, for their individual updates. It’s always gratifying to hear from former students and to see that they’re doing well.
Not much to say about hockey these days, especially les Habitants. Ce n’est pas bon!!!!!! Personally, had a lack-luster game (no points!) at the Forum Friday night – perhaps les Habs and I are going through a similar “slump”, although theirs has much more dire consequences than my own!!!!!!!!!!
On the local level, the Ice-Caps won Friday night by a score of 3-1 against the Albany Devils. Last night’s score was 5-4 (OT) for the Devils.
Best wishes and have a great week, everyone – Jerome