The Apprentice Teacher program at Greenwood is a great way for new teachers to develop their skills and gain real-world experience. Earlier this year, you learned about our Apprentice Teacher program
and met two of our wonderful Apprentice teachers, Craig Harris and Aimen Farhat. Today, we would like to highlight more of our incredible Apprentice Teachers: Nadia Munk, Sarah Ewen and Leah Bandler!
Read below about their experience thus far at Greenwood.
The Apprentice Teacher program has helped with my development by pairing me with many seasoned teachers. This has allowed me to see many different approaches to teaching and learning that I have then been able to put into practice in my own lessons.
My professional learning has been centred around DEI and empathy. Specifically, I have been looking at how exposure to stories with themes of diversity, equity, and inclusion encourage and develop empathy in students.
Coming into any school as a first-year teacher can be tough and COVID has definitely added to that. The biggest challenge has been creating meaningful connections with students, especially with those who are learning solely online.
My favourite part about this program is the ability to wear many hats and pick up as much experience from many different areas of the school as I possibly can. I help run the Grade 7 badminton intramurals, advise the Grade 7 Girls’ Group, and run the Ukulele Club.
After my apprenticeship, I am hoping to move into a full-time teaching job here in Toronto. I feel like I'm ready to put a lot of my learned skills into practice and look forward to having my own classroom!
All of the apprentice teachers meet at least once a week to catch up with each other and our mentor, Mary Gauthier. Together, we learn about research and innovation in education and how it can inform our teaching practice. We are our own community of learners and we are here to help each other improve as teachers. I can't count the number of times I've turned to my fellow apprentices for advice!
We each have our own special project and mine is about "the science of engagement." I'm curious about student engagement and "prime" moments for learning. In one of the Grade 7 Math classes, the students have tried graphing their "prime" learning moments to look for patterns and how they can get the most out of their class time.
I think my favourite moment this year is when all of the Apprentice Teachers worked together to plan community building mornings for the Grade 9s. We got to think about what would really make the students bond as a grade and it was a nice opportunity to spend time with the students outside of classes.
The first week or two of school was a bit tough, especially learning all the students' names while they were wearing masks! After the first few weeks, I felt settled in pretty quickly and I loved getting to know all the students. My favourite extracurricular is playing badminton with the Grade 7s and 8s - we've had a blast this year!
After my apprenticeship, I hope to keep teaching math! I really love working with the math department at Greenwood and I've learned so much from working with such awesome teachers!
I have really valued the balance between having the opportunity to facilitate units independently and simultaneously working alongside experienced teachers to grow my toolkit and pedagogical practice.
This year, I've been examining the impact of coaching conversations during a time when connection is limited. I'm specifically focused on how coaching conversations contribute to developing goal setting and self-awareness skills.
I feel really fortunate to have had opportunities to connect with a number of students in a range of settings; from facilitating Grade 9 community building, to intramurals and even jumping into classes during on-calls. It has been a wonderful experience getting to know the students at Greenwood.
It has certainly been unique teaching in a HyFlex environment. However, I welcome this challenge in the early stages of my teaching career. I know that while teaching is incredibly rewarding, it is not an easy job and I think year has underscored that relationship perfectly. I do dream of the days where I get the opportunity to connect with students in person on a daily basis.
Currently, I am one of the facilitators for the Grade 8 Girls Group. I also help run the intramurals and feel very invested in badminton after months of not being able to play racquet sports.
Another highlight for me has been working with the Diversity Committee and feeling inspired by the passion and hard work of the committee this year.
It has been incredible working alongside the staff at Greenwood and I have learned so much from everyone. This school is full of incredible educators and I hope to take a piece of each of their practices with me in the future. I will pursue my career as a teacher and will continue to prioritize environments that value intentional teaching methods and cultivating experiential learning experiences.
If you would like to learn more about their educational backgrounds and some of their favourite personal hobbies, visit our Teachers and Staff section of our website
and search them in the right-hand drop down bar by the first letter of their last name.