Your Faculty of Education instructors at VIU have been meeting together in order to design a place-based, personalized and collaborative process for your last PB semester. Through inquiry and community based learning, this innovative endeavour will invite you to explore Social Justice, School Governance and Inclusion for Students with Learning Differences as they interrelate with your teaching philosophy, vision and practice.
In response to observations and feedback that faculty have received from prior years, and a desire to reflect in practice what we are learning about best practices in teaching, we have created a Year 6 semester experience that we hope will address your personal and professional needs as a beginning educator.
The program is composed of a variety of experiences that will help you to explore the subject areas in a variety of ways. These will include:
1. One Personal Inquiry exploration and presentation for each of the content areas (three total).
2. One Community Action Project (CAP) that will impact your school and/or local community (using the knowledge we are gaining from our learning).
3. Professional Learning Pods (PLPs) – You will be placed in professional learning pods (PLP) based on geographical locations and across the three cohorts (5-7 students per PLP). Each PLP will be mentored by a faculty member. The PLP will meet on a weekly basis (as arranged by the PLP and their mentor), and will review progress, needs and concerns on a regular basis.
4. A Book Club that will provide your PLP with an opportunity to interact with content material from books selected to engage your thinking and your questions.
5. Weekly Monday morning PLP-Rotations with content instructors to support you with the development of your inquiry.
6. Weekly Monday afternoon Speakers and Films that further explore the interconnections between content areas through a variety of mediums. You will come together as a community and witness presentations or films that exemplify excellence in our field.
7. Weekly Tuesday morning meetings with your Principles of Teaching Instructors (as cohorts) to support your inquiry process and the completion of your framework binder.
8. Mandatory Professional Development. Instructors and or/students will facilitate ProD opportunities based on the questions and needs that arise throughout the semester. These ProD seminars will be available on Thursdays. ProD attendance each week will be mandatory, based on your personal needs, skills and interests. (if you don’t choose a Thursday option, you may choose an alternative activity that you will report on).
9. An Exit Interview to provide students with the opportunity to share their learning.
10. An E-Portfolio which will take place at the end of the semester, after you have completed your final practicum.
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