What is your role as a First Year Coordinator?
I am the Peninsula campus Unit Coordinator in the Faculty of Education. I plan/prepare unit teaching materials in collaboration with Maria Gindidis - she is the Clayton campus Unit Coordinator (UC) and Chief Examiner (CE) of this unit. I also lead a team of staff who teach in this unit and support them in their teaching. I ensure that students are well supported throughout their journey, through wellbeing and assignment related support. It is important for our team - known as the Dream Team - to work hand in hand with us to ensure we deliver a Pedagogy of Care for our students in this unit.
What top tips would you give first year students to have a successful year at Monash?
1. Adopt a Growth Mindset - Love teaching and Live teaching!
2. Be optimistic no matter what comes ahead. You are all the future teachers of 2023 and great teachers manage their time effectively.
3. Stay motivated - turn “I Have To” into “I Want To”
4. Do not leave things the very last minute. If struggling with workload, or work life balance we ask students to reach out to their UCs/CE without leaving it too late.
5. There are pros and cons of this current online learning/teaching environment. We do miss the human feeling and emotional touch of seeing and being with our precious first year cohort, but looking at it from a positive side, we encourage students to keep in touch with your peers via Monash social media platforms, MONSU/MSA and to create your own peer chat groups as shared reading and socialising spaces. Thanks to technology, the world is still connected. Nothing is more motivational than getting involved in a good online community space learning.
What's your favourite hobby?
I love reading and experimenting new teaching strategies. And I love my gym as it keeps my adrenaline rush going. As teachers we do have to keep our thinking sane and fresh, ready for another new day with our learners!
How can students reach out to you if they would like to connect with you?
Via email me (sarika.kewalramani@) or contact me via Moodle chat/messages.