I have been waiting a long time to write this post. This past year has been quite a ride compared to my first year! I noticed that the pace of the program really picked up during the summer. Partly was due to work and other commitments. Entering the last few months of my program is a bittersweet feeling. I am more aware of my teaching style and how I like to interact with learners.
What are your thoughts on research and electives? Any ups and downs?
This past year, the MT program has introduced the Master of Teaching Research Journal and introduced a limited number of student-faculty research opportunities to support the diverse research interests of MT students. These efforts show that the MT program is committed to developing research-informed teacher candidates. Speaking solely for me however, I would have liked the flexibility in selecting my own research methodology and applying for research ethics – which is all part of the graduate student research experience. I think this would have been met with an MA degree because a thesis and methodology course is required.
What did I learn about myself as an educator?
When I first started this program I thought I would only effective to students above a certain age. I preferred mature students who have developed interested in specific subjects – which is why I chose the intermediate/senior stream, so I could have rich discussions around subject content. After four practicums and various extracurricular and co-curricular involvements with students from grades 3 to 12, I no longer see myself as a classroom teacher. The one-on-one interactions with students confirmed that learning happens best when students have a trusting relationship.
So? I most definitely would chose OISE again for the opportunities within OISE, the network of students, instructors and staff, and partnerships it has across the UofT campus. The opportunities are abundant here, but don’t wait them to come to you – go after them yourself!