E111 – Supporting Learning in Primary Schools - TMA01
My experience, role and learning support
In accordance to the ethical guidelines written by The British Education Research Association (BERA, 2004), the names of the children and school, where used, have been changed in order to maintain confidentiality and anonymity.
(Hancock et al., 2013 p1) States that “the practice of learning support as carried out by teaching assistants has developed considerably in recent times”.
In the nursery I work along side two higher level teaching assistants and the nursery teacher. At this stage of school life, the majority of learning is through play, so we encourage the use of structured, well thought out fun educational games and play either in small groups or on a one to one basis, I carry out structured activities i.e. drawing, writing, crafting and reading, either on a one to one basis or with a small group of usually 4-6 children. I help identify any child or children that may benefit from further one to one help, through keeping well informed observation notes (KU1.1) (KS3.1) (PPS4.3)
In my role as classroom assistant in year one, my role is very similar to that of the classroom assistant, Margaret Verrecchie, in reader book 1 (Hancock et al., 2013, pg4) A classroom assistant) I work along side the teacher and one teaching assistant. I help the teacher in the classroom, prepare resources’ for the session and offer the children extra support with reading and writing, it depends on what the teacher wants and needs and on what she asks me to do. Each day is different, and my duties vary accordingly. (PPS4.3) (KS3.1)
As a midday supervisor, I work along side 10 other midday supervisors, supervising the children in the dining area and other parts of the school during the lunch time break. I help the children with a variety of tasks such as cutting up food, unwrapping of pack lunches and help teach good eating habits, After the children finish eating, we go to the playground, or if it’s wet play, a classroom, where I supervise the children at play. I ensure pupils keep out of areas that are out of bounds, deal with misbehaviour, reporting any problems that I’m unable to resolve to my duty manager, I attend to all pupils who are sick or injured, ensuring they receive the appropriate medical attention, reporting all accidents in the accident report book, I am aware of my responsibilities under the child protection legislation, reporting any concerns I may have to my senior supervisor or child protection officer. I enjoy this role as it allows me to see the children in a more relaxed environment, giving me the invaluable opportunity to get to know the children, on a more personal level, getting to know their personalities outside of the classroom. As lunchtimes are a great opportunity for the children to burn of f some steam, I try to encourage the children to take part in lots of physical activities like skipping and hoopla hoops. (PPS4.3)
I can personally relate to the parent helper in the (The Open University, 2013) E111 DVD sequence –Pam Crawford is a parent helper with a son who is special needs statemented, In the sequence, Pam states that she originally started to volunteer mainly to support her son, but along the way she decided that being a teaching assistant was what she wanted to be, so started a college course to train to become a qualified teaching assistant, which is exactly the same as why I am doing this course.
I provide a varied and broad array of duties and tasks on a daily basis in support to the pupils, the teacher, the school and the curriculum, through performing activities on a one to one basis or as part of a team with my work colleagues. Although they do tend to regularly overlap each other, I offer the four levels of support as suggested in the DfEE framework. (PPS4.3)
To support the pupils I encourage them to act independently in an appropriate way, to...
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