I have the honour to present the following report on the Teacher Training Department for the academic year 1943-1944.
The registration during the past year was sixty-six, a decrease of twenty-nine from the previous year's total of ninety-five. This decrease was due to the establishment of a Teacher Training Department at Prince of Wales College to prepare those teachers with United Church affiliations. Of the sixty-six, thirty-three were women students and thirty-three men students. One of these women students was obliged to leave before the end of the first semester through illness.
It is interesting to note the proportion of men teachers to women teachers enrolled during past years. As a rule the women were in the majority. Now for the first time the numbers are the same. This is a significant trend and I think a desirable one from the point of view of the teaching profession. Also an evidence of another move in the right direction is the fact that there are more teachers of experience receiving training this year.
The nature of the work of Teacher Training did not always permit of such mixing with the other departments of the College. The Teacher Training staff endeavoured this year to offset this, first, through athletics, by coaching the students in various games so that they could take part on teams composed of students from other faculties; secondly, by inaugurating early in the year, several weeks of dancing classes so that the Teachers would more readily attend the social events, and lastly, but by no means least, through a series of assignments having the Teachers in Training make more use of the main library which is used by all students and confining them less to the north library which is strictly professional.
At the beginning of the year, Dr. Miller and his colleagues of the Department of Public Health and Welfare carried out their usual thorough physical examination and followed it up with treatments for those requiring them. In addition, Dr. Miller, with his well known enthusiasm, conducted a series of lectures which should aid the Teachers in their future work in their respective communities. We feel that we cannot adequately thank the Department of Public Health and Welfare and Dr. Miller, in particular, for carrying on this most important work.
The course as outlined in the Calendar was followed closely. Manual Training had to be omitted this year unfortunately, but it should form part of the curriculum again next year. The High School Course, begun in the second semester of last year for Teachers in Training, was this year given three periods weekly throughout the year to students qualifying for Associate Grade. An innovation this year was the Educational Seminar held usually on Thursday afternoon at which were discussed many of the problems relating to Education in Newfoundland.
The affiliation plan entered into last year with St. Bride's College was changed slightly this year so that courses could be done wholly at St. Bride's College either by the staff of that college or the staff of the Teacher Training Department visiting there. On Tuesday of each week the students of St. Bride's College attended classes at the Memorial College. With the active co-operation of both staffs in paralleling the courses, the affiliation has functioned very satisfactorily.
During the last two weeks in April our Teachers in Training again had the privilege of visiting the elementary schools of the city for observation and Practice Teaching and found the experience, thanks to the teachers in the schools, both interesting and profitable. Members of the staff saw all the Teachers in Training at work.
In connection with practice teaching it might be added that two weeks is too short a time for this all-important aspect of the teacher's work. To secure the desired results, the teachers should be inducted gradually into responsible teaching and slowly led to integrate educational theory and subject matter with classroom practice. A student studying Chemistry, Physics, Biology, etc., is required to do laboratory work as part of his course. It is absolutely essential if he is to gain any real benefit from the course. We are endeavouring to train teachers without a training laboratory. A Demonstration School, consisting of three or four classrooms staffed by regular teachers to which the Teacher Training Department could have recourse throughout the year, for observation, demonstration and practice, is very necessary if the best type of training is to be given.
The Department has been quite handicapped during the year in having to do without the services of Miss Helen Lodge, Associate Professor of Education, who had been granted a year's leave of absence. This, however, did not prevent her from visiting the College on a number of occasions. Her interest in the work is unfailing as evidenced both by her attendance at several of the speech classes and the help she so generously gave in observing the teachers during their practice teaching.
The thanks of the Department go to you, Sir, for your oversight and co-operation at all times; to Miss Mansfield for many acts of kindness to the teachers, and to Miss Organ for the help given in the selection of reading material.
We are grateful to Rev. Brother Birmingham, M.A., Principal of St. Bonaventure's College, for two invitations extended to the Teachers in Training; the first to witness a performance of the operetta "Maritanna"; the second to hear the senior oratorical contest; also to Mr. Derek Marshall for the use of films on education.
I personally desire to thank Miss Baird, Miss Wilson, Miss Jennings, Dr. Hunter and Mr. Lear, for their work with the teachers during the year, and Miss Fitzpatrick for her ever ready co-operation and support, giving as she did, so much of her personal time in helping the students not only in respect to courses, but in the extra-curricular activities as well.
P. J. HANLEY,
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