So here I am. Three months into starting my second year placement. As of yesterday I can officially call myself a "Master," which means young grasshoppers I hold all knowledge. ..or I WISH I did!
|$40,000 piece of paper|
|MSPP Class of 2013|
In my time this academic year my experiences are vastly different from last year. I'm gaining a lot more experience in my classes with report writing, social emotional assessment, and counseling work. My practicum supervision is just that: supervision. What's going well? Not so well? Where do you need support and how can you get it? At my placement I am branching out and coming into my own. I feel great about a report I turned in and got positive feedback. Even though my skills are still young, its great to have praise to motivate me to the next level (hint, hint educators). I am also expanding my cultural repertoire. I am now in a school in a higher socioeconomic status compared to my first year placement in Boston. I am in a middle school compared to elementary school which is a whole other ball game. Except, I'm starting to really dig this ball game. I'm enjoying what adolescents have to offer me. The conversations. Real life learning opportunities. Discussions about student needs WITH the student, not about the student. Helping students gain more independence.
Speaking of independence, I have an anecdote. Last week I participated in a re-evaluation meeting for an eighth grader. He seems unmotivated to his teachers. Does the bare minimum. Says he has no homework (Yeah, right!). Only cares about football. Testing was pretty average, other than low processing speed. His writing isn't great, but that's most likely due to the reciprocal relationship between his dislike and lack of reading. He feels he doesn't need his learning center time (small group with a special education teacher in addition to regular education classes). So, based on testing and his motivation, the team has decided to cut back on learning center time. This gives him what he wants with the understanding he must prove himself. He is now responsible for his own learning. Sink or swim time. His progress will be monitored and if he isn't up to par, back to learning center he goes. After a conversation with the student and his agreement to this plan, he has now gotten (part of) what he wanted. I'll be interested to see how this one turns out.
These discussions with students and the hope to help them gain independence is something I love about this year. Getting to understand students on a deeper level is so critical. Its one thing to evaluate a student and assume we know what they need, but its more meaningful to find a way to include them in the process. This is something I hope to work on as I continue to work with these students this year.
Sidenote: If anyone reading this blog is interested in learning more about school psychology as a profession or about MSPP feel free to contact me by leaving a comment and I will be in touch!
Until next thyme,