My name is Peter and I have been a teaching assistant here at IPSE for over a year, specifically in the infantile and bressol. From my first day, I felt the warm embrace of a community I was previously unfamiliar with. Any nerves and doubts I had were instantly alleviated by the friendly teaching staff I was introduced to. Before I had entered a classroom I was already sure I would have a enjoyable and beneficial year here. This was further compounded by the excited students eager to know about me, my language and culture. In truth I have had one of the best years of my life teaching and working with such amazing students and teachers and that’s why I decided I would like to return for a second year here which has been amazing so far!
My role in the school is to prepare activities for the various classes i take to develop their proficiency in English. These topics can be quite general such as clothes, family members and the weather or can be more specific if they are related to the syllabus that the children are also learning in Catalan. For example in this semester, the children will be learning about various important artists from Barcelona and the local area so many of my lessons will be tailored towards this.
I help the students, particularly those in P3 develop their English with routine based activities. This includes speaking about the days of the week, the weather and the seasons of the year. We use a toy named Ellie the Elephant to help children speak confidently about what is required that week as well as introducing them to greeting words and phrases they are likely to hear often as they grow and develop.
As well as those listed above, I also help in physical education classes which are particularly useful as they help the children learn while they are moving and being active. Activities are told to the children in English and acted out so they have a comprehensive understanding of what needs to be done. The children seem to thoroughly enjoy these classes as they are moving around and doing things while learning at the same time. We play various games such as ‘red light-green light’ and ‘duck duck goose’. Through these games they learn about teamwork, different body parts, speed and various other words and objectives.
When i am not directly in charge of activities in the class, i also assist the teachers with whatever needs they have which may include taking pupils aside to help them one-to-one in class activities such as writing, painting or speaking which the students often find useful as they usually find it easier to express themselves in a close environment more than when they are in groups or with the whole class. I believe is due to the fact I have developed a personal relationship with them and their confidence is not compromised by not having to explain what is bothering them in front of the whole class.