On one particular day, the Science lesson involved an outside activity using IPads to take a series of photographs of the sky in different locations. After the initial instructions and discussion, the children walked to various nearby locations (within the school) and were very excitable and talkative. I was concerned about the noise level as it would disrupt other classes. It was difficult to control the noise level when children were not in the same location. I was expecting another teacher to come out of their classroom and complain but thankfully that did not happen. When the whole class went back inside we had a very productive discussion about what we had discovered but the children took quite a while to settle down and listen. Shortly after, the bell rang and the children went outside for morning tea. I thought that the lesson had been a disaster and was trying not to cry. The mentor teacher said she thought it was great and the children were engaged in learning the entire time. I was shocked as I had convinced myself it did not go well because of the amount of talking and noise.
To me, this highlighted the importance of sharing experiences and ideas with other teachers and other pre-service educators. Besides receiving valuable feedback and suggestions, it helped me keep things in perspective when the day did not go according plan. It was helpful to hear how others managed similar experiences with the same challenges.
This blog (below) was helpful in pointing out the benefits of using a PLN.