How to prepare for Primary Education with QTS at Edge Hill 👩🏽‍🎓

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Hello!

September is edging closer and closer, and while I urge you to enjoy this time off as much as possible it is important to keep in mind that you are soon going to be a university student and organisation is absolutely paramount. If you are going into the Primary Ed course then look out for summer tasks as last year we had a pre-course summer booklet to work through. I am unsure if this is the case this year but do check. We did use them in our first few weeks – especially the reading.

Read read read:
Whether or not you have a pre-course booklet or whether or not it is included in any task you receive, you must read some children’s books over the summer.  It was part of our summer task but then ended up being part of a requirement for the English subject: to read 10 children’s books. If you can get a head start during the summer then do that, you will thank yourself later – trust me!
These are some great ones to start with:

Books

Get onto Pinterest and start looking at teaching ideas:
If you haven’t heard of Pinterest then I may be about to change your life. Pinterest is a sort of social network where you can find inspiration and ideas for hobbies and stuff, however, if you just type in ‘teaching’ you will be bombarded by hundreds and thousands of teaching ideas. It is important not to become a ‘Pinterest teacher’ where you can’t make anything up from your own creativity but it’s great to go on and find some inspiration.  I would have a look before you come on the course and before your first placement!

Click the image below to have a quick look at some ideas ☺️

Pinterest Screenshot

Social Media and EduTwitter:
When you arrive in September the tutors will talk to you about your social media presence and how it all needs to be privatised and carefully checked to ensure you aren’t being unprofessional. I can’t stress how important this is because teachers from your placement will absolutely check your social media before you arrive so making a good impression is important.

Tutors will also direct you to Twitter, EduTwitter to be precise. This is kind of like Pinterest but on a different format. It’s teachers helping other teachers. There is a lovely welcoming atmosphere to trainees, which to be honest with you I didn’t expect, but they all want to help. So set yourself up a new professional account and get involved in teacher twitter. Follow me on Twitter if you are interested and I will contact you with more advice in this area!
https://twitter.com/EHUMissWindross

Twitter Screenshot

Thanks for reading! Hope to see you in September ☺️

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Advice for starting University in September 👩🏽‍🎓

I had now officially finished my first year and it’s so strange to me that I’m technically no longer a first-year student. I was reflecting on everything that has happened over the past year and I’d like to offer some advice if you are starting out this September…

Be prepared, but don’t burn yourself out:
I came to University as a 22-year-old, so the course and everything I was doing was something I was and am desperately passionate about. This meant that the run-up to Septemeber I was doing all  I could to make sure I had everything ready and even the freshers week I was in the library trying to get ahead. As conscientious as this was, you will burn out quickly. Pace yourself.

Get involved:
The wonderful thing about moving to university is that you basically get a fresh slate. All those things you said you’d do at the start of the year you can start again now! I started doing Yoga again and went to the gym and I got involved with a network of students looking to tackle sustainability in schools. There are so many amazing opportunities here at Edge Hill and I really urge you to get involved as much as you can at the start of the year. Your timetable may get busy and you may not be able to do everything you want but at least you can find what fits right with you.

Don’t bring too much:

I made this mistake. I brought so much with me to Uni, but it was unavoidable for me, if I had a choice I would have left half of it at home. It’s nice to bring some things from home to keep things cosy but too much just makes the room feel small and you may start to feel a little cramped. Also, in term of the communal area: get onto Facebook groups. They were so helpful before starting University. Our flat were communicating through Facebook Messenger before we started and we all talked about what we were going to bring. Nobody needs 8 bottles of Fairy Liquid in the first week, do they!

Lastly…
When people said to me: ‘You will have the time of your life and meet friends for life’ I always rolled my eyes but now, I can’t agree more. I definitely have met people that I’ll have for life and that first year, as fast as it was, will be once I cherish forever. My point here is to enjoy yourself as much as you can. Some days may be more stressful than others but those days just make you appreciate the good even more.

I hope, if you’re coming to Edge Hill in Septemeber, that you are as excited as I was because trust me, it is everything I imagined and more! Hope to see you soon!

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Packing for the first year of University 🏫💼

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Hello!

Summer is approaching at an insane rate, and the fact that I am nearly no longer a first year is dawning on me. It honestly feels like I’ve been here for a couple of months – time really does fly when you’re having fun. I remember googling and search on Youtube for what I need to pack and what the rooms are like.

My tip? Don’t do this:

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Honestly, the car was so full, I wouldn’t be surprised if it was nearly touching the ground. I packed too much, and it’s understandable but really, it’s not necessary. I’ve started to move my stuff, a suitcase at a time, back home already just to make moving out easier than it was moving in – and I’m on the bottom floor!

Here’s what you need to bring on move in day:

Pillows, a duvet and bedding to go with it
Toilet roll, even if it’s just one roll for the night
Toiletries – Body wash, hand soap, tooth brush and paste
Phones, laptops, chargers – all the tech stuff
A notebook, pens and pencils – things for lectures and seminars
All your clothes that you will need, don’t forget pyjamas and socks!
Shoes, comfy ones and going out ones
Washing basket, coat hangers, an airer, towels
Plates/bowls, cutlery and mugs, pots and pans if not provided
Bring all your university paperwork, any summer work that has been tasked and your passport
Food!

I would say that these are the absolute essentials that you will need to bring for move in day. Of course you may want to bring other things like pictures and blankets and other nice decorative things to make it feel cosy.

Side note: post-it notes may be a good idea:

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First week can be daunting if you’re not a party-goer or drinker of alcohol. I don’t mind a nice drink with friends but I’m not a big club person. However, it’s nice to get out and about in that first week and meet people who are like you. I found a nice group of people who preferred the low-key thing too. Just get out there, your people are out there too!

Good luck, and I hope to see you at Edge Hill in September! ☺️

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Getting more than you asked for… 😱

Hello! 

I thought I’d share with you a little adventure I/we went on today, and why this made me feel very grateful for being at Edge Hill University.

As part of the Primary Education with QTS course, you choose a major specialism e.g. English, Maths, Science or Modern Foreign Languages, then a minor e.g. any of the foundation subjects (EAL and SENd are also an option!).

I chose History as my minor specialism and today we all ventured down to Liverpool to undertake a very historical and informative trip.

We all really enjoyed today and it’s a nice break from all the academia.

While I walking around today I couldn’t help but think how amazing this course, and university, really is. To get the opportunity to learn about such amazing history, on a teaching course for one, but also all the other extra bits Edge Hill do to make this place stand out from the rest.

You can learn a language! 📖

There is a Language Centre on campus that provide various different opportunities for you to study a language. This can be with your course or as a module if you are based in the Faculty of Arts and Sciences, or, like me you can attend evening classes. These are open to students, staff and public, but as a registered EHU student, you pay £0! An amazing opportunity to take advantage of while you’re here.

The Student Opportunity Fund! 💰

“You can apply for up to £2,000 to support a career-enhancing project, initiative or opportunity that will enrich your student experience and enable you to stand out in a competitive environment.”

I have recently joined a networking group (#SDGNetwork) that is paid for by the SOF and it allows a group of us to better understand the importance of sustainability, how we can live more sustainable but also how to teach this to pupils in primary schools. It is an amazing experience to be a part of and I can’t believe it is covered for us under this opportunity.

I will write about this network in the future, and if you are coming to Edge Hill as a student in September 2019, you will no doubt meet some of us in a lecture or seminar! Thanks for reading!

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Yoga! 🧘🏽‍♀️🕉

Hello! 

In my last post where I talked about the gym here at Edge Hill University, I mentioned yoga.  The sports centre provide a number of amazing classes and activities but Yoga 🧘🏽‍♀️ is by far my favourite.

They run Yoga on Tuesday at 8.20pm, Wednesday at 2pm and 6.30pm and Sunday at 9.30am. It lasts for an hour and the ones I go to are more of a relaxing, light yoga – it definitely brings some heat to your face and body but it’s nice, controlled stretches rather than painful poses! I can’t recommend it enough.

Yoga is included in the residential membership, which if you apply in the first four weeks you pay £80 for the rest of the year (see more here). It is quite popular so it’s best to book in advance to avoid disappointment. You can do this two ways, either by going into the sports centre and speaking to the reception, or the much easier way is to book it online! You can book any class or activity online and it will show you how many places are left – if there are no places available you will be put on a waiting list and be emailed when/if someone cancels.

This is what my current account looks like. The activity on the 17/3 is at an arrear status as I booked the class but failed to go, and I also forgot to cancel so I was charged the price of the class because of this. You have to scan your membership wristband to get into the gym or the studio so if you don’t turn up, it will register on your account so it’s important to cancel if you can’t make it, as I’m sure you understand. ✌🏽

Thanks for reading! Please feel free to comment with any questions!

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All things Gym at Edge Hill University 🏋🏽‍♀️💪🏼

Hello!

Has anyone been to an Applicant Visit or Open day yet here at Edge Hill University? Did you get to have a look around the campus, more specifically, the gym? If not, don’t worry, everything you need to know about Edge Hill Sport is right here!

Timings and Memberships🕘💰:

The sports centre, this includes the gym, is open 7am – 10pm on weekdays, closing an hour earlier on Friday (9pm). The weekend timings are 9am – 5pm.
The swimming pool is open on Mondays and Wednesdays 7am – 9pm. Tuesday and Thursday’s timings are a little different. They are open 7am-9am then 11am – 9pm. Again, Friday they close an hour earlier: 7am – 8pm. Weekend timings are 9am – 4pm.

This is a screenshot from the Edge Hill Sports Centre website, just to give you a glimpse of what is available at the sports centre.

This year, they offered a ‘residential’ scheme for first years. You were entitled to four weeks free and after that, you can pay £80 for the year, or just opt out. An absolute bargain.

Residential membership

“Students that live on campus are entitled to try out our Premier membership for a trial period of up to 4-weeks from Welcome Sunday on 16 September until 13 October, with the option to then take out our NEW ‘Resident’ membership, which allows full Premier membership for the remainder of the 40-week accommodation contract. You will need to visit Reception in person to activate the trial period and subsequent membership. For our March / April intake of Nursing students, you are entitled to a similar offer to the above with a trial period until 28 April, with the option to then continue in paid membership until 14 September.”

 

What’s on offer? 🏋🏽‍♀️

The Edge Hill University sports centre provides so many opportunities for students. On the residential scheme, you can use every area the centre provides. They ask you to attend an induction to make sure you’re familiar with where everything is or how to use certain equipment – I found this really helpful. They also offer personal training sessions that you can book either alone, or in a group of 3.

My favourite is all the exercise classes they offer. They do everything, from Body Con, Box Fit, Circuits, HIIT to Kettlefit, Pilates, Spin, Step, Yoga and many more. The best thing I’ve found about these classes is they are accessible to all – they allow and plan for different levels of fitness so don’t ever feel afraid of starting a class. Everyone is really friendly and welcoming and the people who run the classes are really lovely and helpful.

Yoga is definitely my favourite class to take. I’ll do a more in-depth post about that next time but for now, I hope you have enjoyed reading all about the wonderful Sports Centre we have here at Edge Hill. I was taken aback at how amazing it really is. Please feel free to ask any questions you make have, I am happy to help. ☺️

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Food and Drink in The Hub – Opening and Closing Times 🥪🍝🥗

Hey!

One thing I think is really important to have is the opening and closing times of places around the campus. Some do display it around their area but I’ve found these aren’t always accurate and they are subject to change. So I did some research and asking around today and got some information about the wonderful places to grab food or drink at Edge Hill – more specifically (because there are so many) we’re going to look at The Hub today!

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The Hub is found right in the center of the campus, attached to the back of the main building. It can get fairly busy at times as it holds some popular places to eat and drink.

McColl’s is the local express shop for the campus. They also cook and serve hot food in the mornings like sausage/bacon barms, hot dogs, slices of pizzas.
Mon – Sun: 7.30am – 11pm

Starbucks is the reason The Hub is quite busy in the mornings. Who doesn’t love a Starbucks? The ladies there are really friendly too and if you bring your own cup you can get money off your drink!
Mon – Fri: 7.30am – 6.30pm
Sat – Sun: 1pm – 5pm
(However, on Applicant Visit Days – they are open from 8am!)

Grab and Go is a lovely little sandwich parlour where you can grab a pre-packaged sandwich, drink and snack for a £2.95 meal deal. Or you can opt for a freshly made ‘subway-like’ sandwich, which is also included in the meal deal and these start at £1.40 (on their own) – which is amazing! They also have paninis, pies, salad boxes, confectionery, drinks and sometimes pizza in the afternoon!
Mon – Fri: 10am – 5pm
Closed at weekends

Sages is a hot food canteen with some lovely meal choices. It’s open in the morning for breakfast but also serve lunch and dinner. I’ll insert a little menu from this week but be aware that this changes!

Mon – Fri: 7.30am – 2.30pm then 5pm – 9pm
Sat – Sun: 10.30am – 1pm then 5pm – 9pm

My favourite thing during the week The Hub holds little pop up market vendors with various street food, sweet treats and other little bits and bobs. There’s always something going on in The Hub and I love that about it!

Wow. Is anyone else hungry? I am.

I hope this helps to show how many amazing places there are to eat and drink at Edge Hill – and that’s only The Hub! There’s many more around campus and we’ll get to that soon ☺️ – thanks for reading! Please feel free to comment if you have any questions.

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Primary Education with QTS – My first professional practice (Regional Opportunity)👩🏽‍🏫🏫

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Hello!

I’ve just gotten back from my first professional practice. I’ve been teaching for 7 weeks on a regional opportunity in High Peak, Derbyshire and I wanted to share some of my experience with you if you’re wondering about placements on this course. 🏫

I’ve talked a little about this before over on this post, but I’ve just gotten back and want to give you my honest opinion of my experience:

The travel 🚂 :
New Mills is a quaint little town close to Stockport. It’s around 50 miles away, which deems it as a regional opportunity. There are also other places such as Cumbria or Barrow-in-Furness, but this may change next year. I travelled there on the train and came back last week on the train also – this can be claimed back as the university will pay for travel to and from university and also to and from the school that I was on placement at. Whether this is trains, cars, buses – all forms of public transport, barring taxis. On top of this, the University provided us with £3 a day for our breakfast which I thought was a lovely gesture.

The accommodation 🏡 :
The University does their best to provide you with accommodation that is as good as your halls, if not better – ours was certainly better and I love my accommodation at Edge Hill! There was four of us from the university placed together in a guest house above a stunning cafe, it was really spacious and fully furnished with everything you could ever need. We were all taken aback at how amazing it was. It was a short drive from the school and one of the flat mates had his car with him so that made everything a lot easier – and he could claim back on taking us every day – 14p per mile and an extra 3p for each passenger. A great set up really.

The school 🏫 :
The school was nothing I had ever seen before. Living and growing up abroad, I was used to big international schools with 4-6 form entry classes, averaging at 90 pupils in a year group. This school has 80 pupils in it’s entire school, and there were only 3 classes: Rec/Y1, Y2/3 and Y3/4/5. I felt out my comfort zone but my mentor and all the staff were so welcoming and you have a visiting tutor from Edge Hill come to check on you which is great. There is lots of support and I enjoyed it so much. I already can’t wait for next years placement!

I hope this has given you  little more insight into regional opportunities. As someone who wants to travel with teaching, I wanted to experience a school and town that I had never been to before and I’m glad I did. I can’t urge you enough to try a regional opportunity if you come to Edge Hill – it’s amazing that they even provide this! 😱

Thanks for reading! Please feel free to comment if you have any questions! 💕

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Edge Hill University Room Tour – Chancellor’s South

Hello!

Just a quick one today! I have previously written quite a detailed blog post about my room here at Edge Hill’s on-campus Halls of Residence. It was a long post so I have decided to put it all into a little video, which will hopefully give a much better insight into the rooms available here.

This is was a lot of fun to make and I hope to make more vlogs about life here at Edge Hill University! Enjoy, the link is below:

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