When the going gets tough…

This time of year is generally a pretty tough one for students of all levels, exam pressures, waiting for uni offers, filling in late applications…
The last few weeks have been pretty much the same for me, lots of pressure, lots of deadlines, and for a few very scary moments, I didn’t think I could do it anymore. I don’t mind telling you this, because what I have learnt is that asking for help is the solution… my tutors (and friends) have been exceptionally helpful, really reassuring me that this kinda happens to everyone at some point! So I’m passing on some tips on reducing your stress levels!
• Talk to someone who can help – if your behind on your work, ask your tutors, if you’re struggling to make decision, find someone who can help…
• Plan your time – and that includes giving yourself a break! You need to recharge your batteries once in a while!
• Stay positive! Talk to the people around you, and you’ll find they may be struggling too!
Talking of positives… as you know I juggle my course with a part time job at a local Domino’s store who recently won Edge Hill’s Student Employer of the year award – EHU recognised the contribution that Domino’s have made to students in terms of being flexible, understanding and supportive, so it was nice to see them get recognised! I also came second in the employee category which again was a really nice achievement for us!
Right… on with the assignments! Onwards and upwards!

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Quick update after a fab night at the Student Employee of the Year awards. Every year the uni recognise students who work on a part time basis alongside their courses, and the employers who help us do it! Tonight I was nominated for student employee of the year, and my employer, Domino’s Pizza St Helens for the employer….

We had a brilliantly succesful night, I came 2nd in my category and Domino’s won theirs! It really was nice to sit back and hear about all the other stuff us students do, and as many of the employers who attended tonight mentioned, part time work whilst you’re at uni looks fab on the old CV!

It was also brill to see a few fellow bloggers and student guides being recognised for all the great work they do in a green bib! But don’t take my word for it, we’ve got loads of applicant visit days coming up – so come and see for yourself!

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The blog is back!!

The blog is back!!
I’m back! Uber apologies for the huge delay in this blog, but my word have I been busy! Since my last blog I have:
• Got right into the primary swing of things again, it’s all about foundation and core subjects now including some fab experiments with tuning forks and water…
• Been promoted at work and nominated for Edge Hill’s Student Employee of the year award
• Completed my 10K run… and survived
• Handed in a further 2 assignments
Hence… the lack of blogs! But now I’m back, and as I say, it’s all about primary now. Placements have been announced, we know where we’re going, and it’s all getting very exciting again! I have to admit, having fallen so much in love with my secondary school, I didn’t think I was going to get excited about going back to primary, but now it’s getting closer my primary head is firmly back on!
I suppose that is the difficult thing about this course is stretching yourself between the two key stages, when you’re out on placement you really feel like a primary teacher, then a secondary, then a… you get my drift. But the fantastic thing is, the breadth of knowledge you have – you know where your kids have been, or where they are going, and in my opinion it just gives you that sneaky little bit more confidence in whatever you are doing.
So talking of knowledge… I’m off to my primary history session! Good luck to all of you with the applications / interviews and everything else you have coming up!

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Walking Taller…

Walking Taller…

Apologies for the lack of blogs, but secondary placement is so busy it’s unbelievable! The good news is, it’s not just busy, it’s challenging, rewarding and a whole heap of fun!

I kind of wanted to wait until today to let you know how I’m getting on, I’ve had my formal observation today (when an Edge Hill tutor comes in to watch your lesson) and my curriculum mentor (the lovely teacher who looks after me in school) decide on my interim grade, which is the grade I get for the placement overall.  And…. I got OUTSTANDING in both! I am absolutely over the moon, to the point where I nearly lost all of my street cred (not that I have much!) and did a little dance in reception!

The kids at secondary are amazing, some are hard work, but it’s definitely worth it.  A, shall we say challenging, pupil came hurtling down the corridor yesterday, and scowled at me as he walked past… ‘got you later miss?’, As I shot my answer back at him all I heard was a little ‘yesssss’ and I have to admit I did the same! I was proud as punch! Even though you’re only on placement for a relatively short time you really do get to feel like part of the school.  I love it!

I’ve also been carrying on with my training for the 10k run I’m doing in March, I do feel fitter, and it’s nice to get a break away from the books, plus I am definitely boosting the sales of deep heat rub and blister plasters! All for a good cause though!

Random Sarah Fact:  I am developing a slight addiction to hot water with lemon and lime, it’s the new energy drink for me!

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Well what a week! 3 essays in and now its all about getting prepared for school on Monday, full half term at secondary… can’t wait!!

I’m also continuing my plans for Prekkie’s run, and hoping to get the kids at school involved in supporting me! It’s really important to build a rapport with them, and with rugby being such a massive part of St Helens culture I’m sure it will get them all fired up!

My plans so far include getting my year 11’s to help me design a logo for my running T-Shirt, and my Y7’s to help me design a just giving page which will be up and ‘running’ (Come on.. I’m an English specialist, couldn’t resist!) very soon!

It’s really important to get involved in extra curricular stuff too, so I’m going to be helping out the PE department (despite hating it at school myself!) to get as many tips from the kids as I can!

Being a teacher, trainee or not, isn’t just about talking at kids and communcating information, it’s about inspiring them too! Take your personal interests in, get them interested too!

And as always, if you are looking for any extra info on anything Edge Hill or you’re thinking of applying for a teacher training course feel free to grab me on here or follow me on Twitter! @SarahWrightEHU

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A New Year Challenge…

So the chocolate oranges have gone, the tree is ready to be recycled, Christmas is over.  I’ve had a lovely couple of weeks and hope you have too, but it’s all about 2011 now… and lots of new challenges.

Firstly, I am busy with some pretty hefty deadlines this week, and I start my full time placement at secondary next week so it’s all go… BUT I have also taken on a new challenge in aid of one of my personal heroes, Steve Prescott.

Steve is a rugby league legend and I have spent many a year watching him in both St Helens and Hull shirts, but the spotlight more recently has unfortunately on his battle with serious illness. But in true rugby league style Steve has turned his illness into a massive charity effort which you can read about here http://www.steveprescottfoundation.co.uk/Home.aspx

Steve’s next big event is a 10k run through St Helens, so I, (yes me who has never run further to the doors of a pub when it’s raining) has decided to use the fab facilities of http://www.edgehill.ac.uk/sportingedge/ to train for a brilliant cause, and I’m really hoping to get all of the kids at school, and my colleagues from both Edge and work behind me!

So, I will be balancing the books with my training, and trying really hard to get myself ready! Wish me luck, and any training tips are most welcome!

Happy New Year!

Random Sarah Fact: I have a signed Steve Prescott sketch up in my lounge which I ‘encouraged’ my husband to bid for in a charity auction – it’s my pride and joy!

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Festive Frenzy!

Festive Frenzy!
Well it’s not long until the big day now and I am nowhere near ready! I have had a fantasic but frenzied few weeks, being back in school and having loads of assignments and coursework on the go.
Since I last blogged I have had the results back from my first exam and managed to get a first! I walked out of that exam practically in tears, worrying that I hadn’t done enough so it just shows you, if you put the hard work in it really does pay off!
But… no partying for QTS students yet, this is a really busy time of year for us, all of our assignments are due in the first week of January, and then it’s off to school, but the sense of achievement is a great motivator! Plus, it’s really exciting getting to plan my first long term schemes of work for secondary pupils!
Don’t forget to keep up to date with the Edge Hill website that will give you all the info you need to apply, there is even a sneak peek of our education facilities here http://www.edgehill.ac.uk/video/tag/studentexperience/education

Random Sarah Fact: At the time of writing there are only 40 days 2 hours and 48 minutes until the start of the rugby league season for St Helens!

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So very nearly The Stig…


So my attempts to avoid having my photo taken were thoroughly ruined today! I’ve finally been snapped so my attempt at being the ‘Stig’ of the Edge bloggers has failed miserably!

Having spent a lovely weekend celebrating my anniversary in York (who just pipped us to University of the year last week) my nose is firmly back to the grindstone, and I’ve got school tomorrow…

I got my teaching timetable and an idea of the subjects I will be teaching after Christmas last week, so now it’s all about the research.  It’s not just about knowing your stuff though, it’s how to present it your pupils in new and exciting ways, we all had a favourite teacher at school and I’m hoping that by putting the effort in someone will be saying that about me one day! I’m sure a lot of you are doing your own research now about what Uni’s you want to visit, so hopefully we will see you on campus soon, but if you have already been lucky enough to secure an interview for a teaching course here are some tips for you, make sure you;

      Know where you are coming! Either attend one of our open days before your interview or do a dry run, you can’t miss us! ( Here is all our Open day info…http://www.edgehill.ac.uk/study/events/education)

      Think about why you want to be a teacher, it sounds silly but when you’re under pressure you can forget to be passionate, try going over your answers with a friend

      Be knowledgeable – you won’t be expected to be a genius already, but check out things like BBC Education to keep up to date with the ever changing teaching scene

       Relax and be yourself – your interview is also an opportunity to ask questions, look around campus and see where your future career could start!

As always, if you have any questions feel free to comment of catch me on Twitter @SarahWrightEHU

Random Sarah Fact:  My favourite teacher was Mr Johnstone who taught at my old school Sutton High, he was an absolute legend! If I end up half way as good as him I’ll be made up!

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See you at the open day…

It’s all about tomorrow!! I cannot wait to show off our fab campus, and I am especially looking forward to meeting those of you who are interested in teaching!

Well, what a week it’s been I took part in my first ever reading group in preparation for Anne Fine’s visit next week.  She is an absolute legend in children’s literature and I would highly recommend you look at a few of her books, you can find loads of information on her at Lancashire Reads, http://www.lancashire.gov.uk/libraries/lancashirereads/index.asp well worth a nosey! We are so lucky to attract such big names to EHU, I love all this celeb mingling!

After a wonderful blogging master class with a great friend this afternoon I’m hoping to make this bigger and better than ever, so look out for new links to Facebook, and don’t forget you can always catch me on the Tweety thing!! (SarahWrightEHU)

Random Sarah Fact: I have the craziest Amazon parrot you will ever meet and he is my pride and joy!

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So much to do, so little time…

Wow I’m busy! Oodles of assignments on the go, super busy at work and I’m also planning my Christmas dinner for 16!
But I’ve actually let myself have a little bit of time to reflect, and think about how the year has gone so far. I’ve been back at Uni for just seven weeks and I have…
• Completed half of modules in poetry, Shakespeare (love a bit of Will!) History of language, subject application and professional studies (Told you I’ve been busy…)
• Sat one exam
• Been awarded an excellence scholarship and met our university chancellor Tanya Byron
• Started my first secondary school placement and loved it
• Read an average of 15 books (!)
• Heard both the US and UK poet laureates read, Edge put on an amazing evening with Billy Collins and Carol Ann Duffy
And that is literally a snapshot. You really aren’t at University for very long so it’s really important to give yourself the odd pat on the back every now and again! However… don’t have time to stop for too long!!
Next week is going to get even more exciting, I get to meet the legend that is ANNE FINE!! But more about that next time…
Random Sarah Fact: I am absolutely terrified of fish, live ones, dead ones cartoon ones, and found out on my first day at Uni that 2 of my now best mates are too!

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