This is a cohort feedback given in week 11 after looking at all portfolio work so far. I would like to make some general observations and give some pointers in how you can prepare your portfolio until submission.
I was really pleased to see how well many of you have engaged with your portfolio and have reflected on a regular basis capturing your learning journey through the module. Many of your reflections are rich in descriptions. Please remember that we need to become more critical and deepen our reflections (see further guidelines on reflection in Blackboard and remember we are talking about academic reflective writing) and link to relevant generic and subject-specific literature (limited evidence of this is captured at the moment in your portfolios) but also relevant areas of activities, core knowledge and professional values. Please do remember the values as well. It is not just important to say what and how we do it but most importantly why.
Your 6 posts should be clearly titled and it would help to include 1/6, 2/6, 3/6, 4/6, 5/6 in your title as some of you have used their reflective journal to capture their reflection on everyday teaching practice which is wonderful and I can see how this has helped you develop reflective skills. Remember that the post you submit as part of your assessment (component 1) will need to be linked to your practice. More theoretical explorations are useful and I have seen some of you skilfully creating such posts, you will also need to remember to link these clearly and explicitly to your practice if you would like to use these for assessment purposes. The 6 posts should be
- 1/6 educational autobiography
- 2/6 reflections on my creative intervention (game)
- 3/6 reflections on tutor observation
- 4/6 reflections on mentor observations
- 5/6 reflections on peer observation
- 6/6 reflections on observing a peer
Some of your reflections on the observations are at the moment very descriptive and provide rich detail of what happened in these classrooms and what you observed. Remember that it will be important to focus on what you are taking away from these observations. What did you learn? How would you feel being a learner or a teacher in this classroom? Including reflections on the conversation you had with the observer afterwards are also vital and should be included. Find a focus for each reflection and avoid capturing everything that happened. What stood out for you and why? Then analyse this and support with literature and show how this links also to the UK PSF.
The reflective journal is tutor and peer assessed. I have noticed that many of you have started commenting on each other’s portfolio and this is really good. Please access Blackboard to find out who is your feedback buddy/are your feedback buddies. Until submission, I would like you to work closer together and provide formative feedback to your buddy. Immediately after submission you will be asked to provide summative feedback to your buddy/buddies using the same template the PGCAP tutors are using.
It is also really good to see how you have all personalised your portfolio and also include still and moving images linked to your practice. Remember to add an about me page if you haven’t done so already. This is useful for the moderator and our external examiners to contextualise your story. I find it fascinating the work you are doing with your students. So thank you for sharing your success stories but also interventions that can be developed further. Sharing them with your peers will help you start a dialogue about teaching and learning and help you develop some of your ideas further. I have seen evidence that this is happening in some cases.
There are a few of you, you have done very little work in your portfolio and I do worry, I have to say. There is still time to catch up, but please get in touch as soon as possible if you experience any problem making good progress with your portfolio.
I look forward to accessing your portfolios after submission and marking these. Well done so far to you all. Please take the above comments and suggestions into consideration when finalising your portfolio. Thank you.
Chrissi, LTHE tutor