Teaching Jobs

Hello everyone!

I hope you have had a fantastic weekend. Since I am coming to the end of my university course,  it is that time where everyone is looking for their dream school to work with!

Edge Hill University offer a lot of  support to help you search for work. In 2018, 95% of students who completed my primary education course found employment within 6 months after finishing their degree. Edge Hill Careers offer advice on lots of topics of discussion such as job-hunting and CV writing. It is easy to book an appointment online.

NQT pools

Different authorities and areas have their own ‘NQT pool.’ I hadn’t heard of teacher pools before so wanted to find out more information about them. Some pools may require an application, interview and teaching observation. Once you gain a place in the pool, different schools in that area have access to your information and experience. From here, they contact you directly to offer an interview. I highly recommend researching which pools you would consider joining!

School websites

Individual schools often advertise their vacancies on their official website. There are usually the following information and documents available: application form, person specification, job description, a closing date and an interview date. So if you have a specific school in mind, perhaps from your previous placements or work experience,  make sure to have a look and see if there are any vacancies available!

Other Websites

Other websites provide filtered search engines to help you search for vacancies that match what you are looking for. Options include the location, the year group / key stage, full-time, part-time, permanent or temporary jobs.

AND if you decide teaching is not for you… the primary education degree opens you up to soooo many other options. Some people decide to do a masters in a different subject and others begin to teach abroad! The possibilities are never-ending. Wishing you the best of luck!

Speak soon,

 

Planning lessons – where to start!

Hey there!

Since there are many of you who are starting your teaching course in September, I thought I would talk about planning lessons on professional practice. As you are likely to start your placement around January time, you have plenty of time to research and get support from university.

I found the seminars before placement really useful to gain more ideas and inspiration for teaching different subjects. As you will be teaching up to 30% of the timetable in first year, you can spend some other time observing your teacher’s lessons or visiting other classes in order to feel even more inspired!

Finding inspiration:
  • Facebook groups can be really useful to discuss and share lesson ideas
  • Twitter / Instagram / Pinterest
  • websites such as TES where you can create a free account and download lots of different resources
  • advice from other teachers
  • advice from university tutors
Other things to think about:
  • class size
  • if your lesson is part of a series within a topic
  • the resources you will need e.g. are there iPads available and are there enough for the whole class?
  • deploying support staff effectively e.g. can they challenge those children who can learn at greater depth?
  • how can you make the lesson as creative as possible to make it memorable and effective?
  • if the lesson is practical, how can the children demonstrate their learning for future reference?

These are just a few ideas that I hope will be useful to you… let me know if you have any questions! Have a lovely weekend.

Teaching Courses at Edge Hill University

Hello again!

As you all know, Edge Hill University is renowned for its fantastic undergraduate and postgraduate teaching courses ranging from early years to further education. Before teaching a class of 30 children myself, I had no idea how much is involved in teaching. I also didn’t realise how much value it had. Whether it is watching a pupil understand a concept for the first time or adding a smile to their day, it made all the hard work SO worth it.

You can find more information about each type of degree and course here. The structure for each course will vary year to year, but this is a general outline of my course (Primary Education with QTS).

Specialism

Edge Hill’s teaching course is unique in the way that you can specialise in a subject when teaching primary. I chose to specialise in Science, with Art as my minor specialism. These extra modules allow us to deepen our knowledge in those certain areas and they may become a valuable edge to have when applying to be a subject lead. Therefore, when we graduate, our degree includes our major subject specialism e.g. primary science education with QTS.

Modules

My modules are slightly different this year to my previous years. This is a list of the type of modules in my degree…

  • English and Computing
  • Science and Maths
  • APD (academic professional development)
  • Major specialism
  • Minor specialism
  • Reflective practitioner (started this year)
  • Professional practice

Unlike a lot of degrees, the bulk of our modules are made up of seminars instead of lectures. This is one of the reasons this course appealed to me. Most weeks we attend one or two lectures which is a good chance to ask general questions and deepen our knowledge of various concepts. However, I enjoy the discussions and liveliness involved with our 1-2 hour seminars… and I am sure you will too!

Professional practice

As my degree is a 3-year course, placement is more spread out compared to a PGCE. This means, we completed 7 weeks in first year, 8 weeks in second year and 10 weeks in third year. Professional practice is the chance for you to understand what it is really like to have your own class. Before I started teaching in first year, I was worried I would not have the confidence. However, after lots of experience and support from the university and the school, I was able to complete my placements with success. No matter how nervous you might feel, experience will help you become the teacher you want to be!

Assessments

For primary education, there has not been a dissertation or sit-down exams. Instead we are assessed on assignments throughout the year, portfolios and lesson observations. I have enjoyed the variation in assessments and I am here to answer any further questions you may have!

I hope this has been useful in giving you more of an insight into teaching courses at Edge Hill.

Speak soon,

Managing University Work

Hello again

As my final placement came to an end a few weeks ago, I have certainly been enjoying some lie-ins and time off! However, there is still university work to be completed! My primary education course may be a little different to other types of degrees because there is no dissertation involved. This may sound ideal… but there is other work to do! For example: assignments, presentations and oral exams. As I only have a few months of university left, I want to make sure these things are done to the best of my ability in addition to enjoying the last university social events! Therefore, organisation is KEY! Here are a few handy tips that I am attempting to follow…

To-do list

Although this may not be as useful for everybody, making a to-do list can help me to visualise the work that needs to be done – I don’t know what I would do without it! As soon as you are set a new task, add it to your list! If you want to be EXTRA organised (or too organised?) you can use highlighters to colour-code the urgency in which things need to be completed.

Work space

For me, Edge Hill’s library provides the perfect environment to focus on my work. I am quite the procrastinator ya see… so sitting at a desk with 3 walls surrounding it is the PERFECT spot for someone like me! You can find out more about Edge Hill’s library in the Catalyst building here. However, other people may work best in the comfort of their own home. It is completely up to you, but make sure you know where you prefer to work as this could save you a lot of time.

End goal

If work starts to feel overwhelming, remember to take things one step at a time. There is only so much energy you can put in. If you’re lacking motivation, picture yourself a few months down the line. What kind of grades do you want? Where do you want to be? Always keep your end goal in mind.

Relax

No matter what or how much work you get, university tutors do NOT expect you to be working 24/7. Frankly, it’s IMPOSSIBLE. Go outside. Clear your mind. Make a hot drink. Go for a walk. Visit your family and friends. Have an Alpine night out. Most of all… do what you enjoy and make sure you get some down-time.

Let me know if you have any queries and I’ll try my best to answer! Until next time…

Applying for Jobs

Hello everyone!

I hope you have been enjoying this lovely weather. It is unbelievable to think that the ‘Beast from the East’ was one year ago… and now look at us! For primary education, some jobs are beginning to become available so it is a time of applications and interviews! Whether you’re also applying to schools, or applying for part-time jobs whilst you’re at university, here are some tips that might be useful to you!

Work experience / Volunteering

If you get the chance, try to arrange some work experience if it is desirable for a job that you’re applying for. However, you might already have lots of experience to reflect on!

Edge Hill’s careers centre

Edge Hill have wonderful careers centre where you can arrange a meeting for advice and guidance. You can find out more about them here. There are also careers fairs that Edge Hill put on throughout the year  in the student hub!

 

Your Application Form

Keep it relevant to the job you’re applying for. For example, if you’re wanting to work at a local youth centre, any experience working with children will be useful to speak about. For the jobs I have applied to in the past (like a children’s residential camp) there was guidance for filling out the application form on the website. This was really useful and reassuring, so make sure to keep an eye out for something similar!

Interview

I had my first interview for a NQT pool and I tried to think of it as a ‘practise interview,’ which really helped me to relax. I would also advise to take some kind of portfolio with you. Although it may not be completely necessary, it could be the thing that makes you stand out from the other candidates.

Whether you’re thinking of applying for a full-time or part-time job, I wish you the very best of luck!!!

Speak soon,

What is the Primary Education course all about?

Hey everyone, I hope you all had an amazing weekend and are ready for the week ahead! I cannot believe that it is February already. This made me realise that a lot of you may have already had your interview for Edge Hill University as I had mine around a year ago!

This post will hopefully offer some more information about the Primary Education with QTS course that I am currently studying here and loving every minute of it. Enjoy!


What is the timetable like?

Personally, I find that the timetable for Primary Education is very good as it keeps me busy. Others would say that the timetable is rather ‘jam-packed,’ which is true but, in my opinion , the more classes, the better. 

My timetable looks something like this;

  • Monday – Independent Study
  • Tuesday – Minor Specialism
  • Wednesday – Foundation subject seminars which are sometimes followed by a curriculum lecture
  • Thursday – Core subjects such as; computing, maths and English
  • Friday – APD lecture followed by science then an APD seminar.

This timetable varies between the year group and over the years. As I said, some people may find this timetable rather busy but I love it because it keeps me busy, occupied and you appreciate the weekend more. Don’t worry, you still have time for socializing and going to any societies which makes the timetable much better.

 

Any exams?

Nope! Thankfully we have no written exams and so our grade is based on  assignments and our professional practice. This is good if you are better at writing essays with no looming time limit in a large hall but you need to have some self-discipline! Those assignments are not going to write and reference themselves, start them early so that there is no rush before the dreaded deadline.

I am currently on my professional practice and I am loving every single minute of it! A visiting tutor comes in to assess you against the Teacher Standards which means you must work very hard to involve yourself in every aspect of school life. Luckily for me, I am in an amazing school that has given me so many great opportunities for learning.

 

Duration?

The course that I am studying is a 3 year course. Each year you have a block placement that gets longer each year. For example, in first year currently, we are all on a 7 week block placement and then next year it will be longer.

First year has seriously gone by so fast so I have no idea how quickly the next couple of years of my life are going to go!

 

What are the staff and lectures like?

I am so happy that I chose Edge Hill University as my place to study to become a teacher. The staff and lecturers are amazing in terms of support and advice they give you, even during placement! 

All the lectures and seminars are really interactive and interesting so there is no need to worry about falling asleep at a 9am lecture because you will not want to miss it. You can tell that so much thought has been put in to each presentation and seminar which makes them so worth while coming to.

If you do happen to miss a lecture due to illness, some lectures are recorded and put up on Blackboard, a place we can all access work materials and assignment guidance. However, a recorded lecture is never the same as the real deal, trust me.


I hope that this post has been helpful to those of you who have applied to study Primary Education with QTS. It really is an amazing course, offering so many opportunities to expand your learning and experiences. I cannot wait for the next two years!

“A good teacher can inspire hope, ignite the imagination, and instill a love of learning.”

– Brad Henry – 

Running a School Club

Hello! How are you?

I am SO close to the end of my final placement of primary education… and I know the last day is going to be a sad one! Not only because I will miss the children, but because I will miss everybody who works at the school. I have never been in a place so welcoming with so many smiley faces. By knowing there is a lot of support around me, it has really made the placement work a lot easier!

In order to meet the criteria for teachers’ standard 8, it is extremely important to take on more responsibilities. For example, helping out at a Christmas fair or simply working cooperatively with colleagues and parents. Since I am very passionate for art, I have been running my own art club for pupils in year 4. Getting involved with messy art activities has been a lot of fun – for me and the children!

If you are also on professional practice, or know you will be soon, I definitely recommend creating your own club! Obviously, it depends on the school and which type of clubs they are already running. However, if you have the chance I 100% say go for it!

Last week the children began to create ‘galaxy jars’ by sticking tissue paper on a glass jar like a mosaic. It was a pretty simple activity but VERY effective. We will be finishing them off with a bit of glitter tomorrow! Who doesn’t love a bit of glitter?

I would love to hear about any clubs you are, or soon will be running!

Speak soon,

Graduation is approaching…

Hello and happy Saturday!

For the past 2 years I have scrolled past the advertisement for the graduation ball thinking “oh that’s not going to be me any time soon…” And suddenly… it is.  I have actually bought a ticket for my graduation ball and I can’t really believe it!

Edge Hill University has given me so much and I don’t think I feel ready to leave!!! (I know I’m not quite leaving yet… but I’m sure that the last few months will go pretty fast). This makes me realise how JEALOUS I am of you freshers!!! SO my point to you is… do not wish university life away. Soon, you will NOT be scrolling past the graduation ball advertisements too! Here are some of my favourite things about the past couple of years at Edge Hill:

Ormskirk

Ormskirk has been the perfect place to enjoy university life. The beautiful countryside does not stop the town from having a buzzing nightlife filled with bars, live music and pubs.

My Course

My primary education course has provided brilliant teaching experience and interesting seminars where I have made life-long friends.  

Campus

Edge Hill’s campus is the main reason why I decided to apply here. The modern accommodation and never-ending list of things to do makes it a wonderful place to be. Wednesday night socials, karaoke and the student quiz nights are some of the wonderful events that take place at the SU.

When you arrive at Edge Hill on move in Sunday, you will see for yourself how great your university experience will be… so enjoy every single day and make the most of it!

Speak soon,

Final Year Placement

Hello everyone!

I hope you all have that Friday feeling and have some nice weekend plans ahead!

I have officially completed 8 weeks of my final professional practice with only 2 more to go! The time has flown by and what an incredible experience it has been! This is partly down to the support and guidance from teachers in my current placement school, and also because of previous teaching opportunities that Edge hill have provided.

When I applied to study primary education, I did not realise how worthwhile and valuable professional practice would be. Although our seminars and lectures are useful for developing our knowledge of classroom pedagogy, putting theory into practice has been my favourite part of the course for many reasons.

Usually, at the start of a placement block, students begin to teach a small percentage of the timetable. This increases week by week until it reaches 80%, which used to seem impossible! However, having 3 blocks of professional practice has allowed me to grow in confidence and develop my love for teaching even more!

If you are going to study a teaching course with professional practice opportunities,  feel free to ask any questions and I’ll do my best to answer them!

Have a fantastic weekend,

Next Steps

Hello guys! I hope you are having a lovely weekend.

When I finished Sixth Form it was definitely a bitter-sweet feeling! I was so sad to be leaving that part of my life behind and felt anxious about what would come next! On the other hand, it was so exciting to be moving on to the next step… university! University might not be for you but these are some things I am personally grateful for at Edge Hill University.   

Independence

Although it is nice to be at home with the luxuries such as homemade meals… moving out will give you that extra independence. It has definitely given me a confidence boost since leaving school.

Meeting new people

The best part of moving out is the chance to meet new people from different backgrounds and cultures. I am so grateful for getting to know the people I live with and go to lectures with. Let’s just say I’m not looking forward to saying goodbye to them at graduation!  🙁

The nights out

Although Manchester (my home town) is a great place for a big night out, there is something about Ormskirk that I absolutely love. You can guarantee you’ll bump into someone you know because the clubs and bars will be filled with students from Edge Hill. AND there isn’t a club quite like the one and only Alpine.

The nights in

When I come home for the weekend or the holidays, I find myself bored without my flat mates next door. At university, there is never a moment you feel alone as there is ALWAYS someone close by.

Opportunities

At Edge Hill there are soooo many different opportunities available to you that you may not have come across before. Whether it is joining a sports team, volunteering or working abroad, there are fantastic experiences available. There are stalls in the hub which often advertise them.

Who do you want to be?

Coming to university can really make a person. With new friends, new independence and new experiences, university life is something I will miss dearly… so make the most of it!!