Wednesday, 7 March 2012

Home Tutor Panel

For the recent Home Tutor workshop I was asked by the school to take part in the Home Tutor Panel, to share my wisdom and ideas from the schoolroom (cough, cough wing it) with other HTs, mainly because I have the most children under my care at the school. I have to say I was a bit chuffed to be asked ... me wise lol. This meant however that I was pretty disappionted when I couldn't make it. I had even made sure our schoolroom was tidy for photos ... so disappointing. Anyway I decided to answer the questions given here instead.

Family
I work for two families on a cattle station in North Western QLD. Under my care I have four school aged children and one under school age child.
Miss S - Year7
Mr R - Year 4
Miss E - Year 4
Mr E - Year 1
Mr T - age 3

Help
I have the kids in the schoolroom during the day unless I really need some assistance. I sometimes send books, spelling and other activities home for the kids to do with their parents. When it comes to behaviour management I have the full support of the parents.

Other Duties
I help out with household duties when needed and care for the children in emergencies or if their parent need to go away. I am basically just employed to work in the schoolroom and any other duties I preform are because I live with one of the families.

Station Work
The station is family owned and run with no other workers so we all help out when we can. They try to do a big muster twice a year around May and August. When that happens the kids take turns to go out mustering and it is all hands on deck in the yards. The kids help out with any other station work after school and on weekends. When we had fires last year it was a case of all able bodies being recruited which meant I went out and the kids missed school.



Me
I have been governessing for nearly 3 and 1/4 years. I have been here for nearly 2 and a 1/2 and worked for another lovely family for 3/4 of a year before that.

Schoolroom
Until the end of last year our schoolroom was in the main house beside the kitchen but we now have a new school building that houses the schoolroom and my nearly finished quarters.


Materials
Our papers for the unit are stored in ring binders according to subject. When the kids finish their send in sheets they go into a drawer on their desk and the lesson part of their papers goes into the back of the ring binder. Unopened units are kept on a shelf in our lovely built in cupboards. The kids keep their pencils, rubbers etc in small drawers on their desks. All of our art and craft materials, magazines, games, maths equiptment etc are kept in the cupboards.


Structure
We start our day at 8am and finish at 3/3:30pm. The kids have 1/2 and hour for smoko at around 10am and an hour for lunch from 1pm. After school we will often do art, dancing, games, cooking, experiments or anything else we can come up with but usually only until about 4pm at the latest. We try to stick to our start and finish times but what happens in the middle is pretty flexable revolving around order of maths, spelling, english then clc/science. If the kids aren't understanding work and it is just becoming frustraiting wel put it away for later or the next day and move on.

Planning
My initial reply was LOL ... but no I do actually do some however if it has been a long, hard day it will be skipped and done another time. I usually do any planning and preparation after school but will sometimes get into it on the weekend. As we have to scan the kids send in sheets to school that usually is done in the afternoon as well (that is a lot of scanning).  I have been going through the units when we start them to cut and laminate any sheets that are used repeatedly or are for games. Any laminating I do whenever the engine is on often cutting it out in front of the T.V at night.

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