Meet Nozomi Koyama
Master of Teaching (Primary) graduate.
Nozomi Koyama completed the Master of Teaching (Primary) in 2015. She is now teaching grade 5/6 at Huntingdale Primary School.
Why did the Master of Teaching (Primary) course appeal to you?
The Master of Teaching (Primary) course appealed to me because there was a good balance of placement days and university contact hours. I think it is great being able to start placement from very early on in the semester but also have constant support from peers and academics on campus.
I also undertook my undergraduate degree at the University of Melbourne, and I wanted to stay here because I love the University very much!
What's the best thing you've gained from doing the course?
This is hard to say, because I have gained so much from doing this course.
The teaching staff at the Melbourne Graduate School of Education are fantastic, and very passionate about what they do. They have certainly helped me gain content knowledge across the curriculum.
However, I have to say that the biggest impact was on how I can now see myself as a learner - to constantly reflect back and evaluate my practice based on evidence, and find ways to improve my pedagogy. I feel like I have become very independent as I know how to find resources and obtain support when I need to.
What did you find most challenging about the course?
I think many people will say that the academic workload was challenging. I agree to some extent. But I absolutely love reading and researching about teaching and how I can improve my practice, that I hardly ever found the assignments stressful. They were tough - but those were my learning moments.
I would have to say that moving from one placement school to the next was quite challenging, because you need to understand the context of the school to be able to teach effectively. You might have certain expectations about a particular year level, but that would be completely different in a different school.
How has the Graduate School supported you throughout this course?
I think the biggest support you get at the Melbourne Graduate School of Education is the constructive feedback - from peers, lecturers, tutors, and the mentor teacher. We always have time to talk about our teaching practices at Uni, and the academics are also accessible via email.
The workshops and lectures are also great because I can gain resources that I can use in my classroom. The ideas we gain from the university subjects can be applied to various classroom situations, which is also another form of support that we gain through this course.
What advice would you give to someone thinking about doing this course?
Be prepared to study very hard - for the purpose of providing best educational opportunities for our future students! We learn about how education can be very unjust and I sometimes I think it can be cognitively and emotionally stressful. So I think you need to be prepared for very intense (but rewarding!) two years, and be able to balance your life as a teacher and your life outside of school.