- Nick Ramsey is an Ohio University Lancaster Middle Childhood Education major who is studying abroad this fall by student teaching in Perth, Australia. He is writing a bi-weekly blog for the OUL website. He is the first Ohio University regional campus student to be selected for the Consortium for Overseas Student Teaching or COST. Click here to read more on Nick's story.
Wow, time is flying by! We are in the last week of our third term here, out of four, and have a much needed two week break starting this Friday. The weather is beautiful as we are entering the heart of spring so it is the perfect time for a mini vacation. Unfortunately I have a ton of work to catch up on, but I should be on these white sand beaches soon enough! There are so many sites and places to go see that we have not yet had the chance to explore, so I am really excited to get that chance.
I will, however, miss my students. They have been very good these past couple of weeks. I think I have built great relationships here. I have been their full-time teacher for about six weeks now and this week most teachers will be giving end of term assessments, which should cover everything over the past eight weeks. I am giving an end of term assessment for my year eight classes and my year ten class. My year nine class has been given multiple quizzes; we did one about every two weeks. I did not feel comfortable giving them the same term test the other year nine classes are going to take, it just wouldn't be productive.
This will be the first time that I have taught entire units and distributed a test at the end of them. So, I am excited to see their test scores which will somewhat reflect my teaching. I feel somewhat confident that they will do well; we did various revisions and prepping for the tests. I designed a few jeopardy games to use as revision, which most of the students have never heard of. They had a blast playing it though, we even had sound effects and the theme music going during final jeopardy.
Funny story; one class had come down to the final jeopardy question and both wagered all of their points for the all out win. The question was "What city and state is Mr. Ramsey From?" Apparently I do not do enough talking about myself because both teams lost all of their points by guessing Boston, and California. That was pretty disappointing but I guess I never formally told them where I was from; I just dropped it in there a few times when students asked. So I have decided that I should probably take a class period or at least half of a period talking about America and my experiences there. I have been so busy trying to make sure I get all of my lessons in there and we stay in coordination with the other classes that I forgot to address the reason why I was even over here teaching them. I have noticed though, that the older the students are more reluctant they to ask you about your life.
My year tens are, for the most part, all business. They are the AP class and they constantly want to make sure they know everything they need to know to get an A. But the younger students are much more interested in my accent and if I can sing. I'll give you an example. I had the opportunity to work with an elementary school again here at Belmont. A neighboring school brought a group of students over to our school while I ran a chemistry lesson for them. It is a program our school has been newly involved with in order to promote our school to nearby elementary schools as a potential high school for their students. Anyway, I could barely get a word of instructions out to these elementary aged children before they had a million questions about if I knew Justin Beiber, if I could dance, sing, if I have been to Hollywood, if I played professional basketball. It was all very flattering but I was sad to let them all down with no, I am just an average Joe from the middle of a state you've never heard of.
I wish I had more experiences to share with you from the past two weeks but there has not been too much going on. The drama club of the school has been putting on a show for various Primary schools over the past week. I just went snuck in to go see the play and it was absolutely wonderful! Many of my students were in the play and they did such a great job. They actually thought out the entire play themselves, wrote the scripts and even had the fashion club design some of the costumes. I was very impressed with their work; it was comical and engaging for the children.
Friday is the last day of term and then we have a two week break from school. My host parents will be taking us down south for a week of the holiday to relax in a small town that has many historic sites and cool things to see. The last week of break I will hopefully be caught up on all of my work and will do some exploring around Perth. My roommates will be out East but I have met quite a few people here that have offered to show to a few must see places before I leave. The biggest thing of all though is the AFL grand final! This is like the closest thing to our superbowl as it gets here in Australia. I went out last weekend with some guys to watch the semifinal game and one of the local teams (Fremantle) won and will be playing a Melbourne team for the grand cup this upcoming Saturday. If Fremantle wins this weekend it will be absolutely pandemonium in Perth! I am becoming quite fond of this game so my eyes will be glued to the television with almost every other Australian.
I hope everyone is enjoying the best part of fall weather; I will talk to you soon!