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My eldest girls are now looking towards their futures and planning what they might like to do; it has been strange to see 2 of them move naturally into part time jobs that involve teaching and coaching children – you might think that their formative years out of school wouldn’t equip them for that – but yet again, home education proves itself as an amazing grounding for life. With the first uni offer in for that little girl who this website started for, she’s looking to become a sports coach and many of her ‘home ed cohort’ are now also at uni or looking towards their future. No doubt some of them will end up teaching, a career likely to undergo considerable evolution over the next ten years. Here is some career advice for anyone considering teaching as their vocation.
A good primary school teacher can change the lives of children, inspiring them to be confident, capable and hardworking individuals. Schools are constantly on the lookout for dedicated, well-educated staff that can shape the next generation in a creative and imaginative way, so if you think you’ve got what it takes to teach primary-aged kids – here are seven ways to enter the profession.
- Choose the right degree
If you’ve always dreamed of seeing children skip in and out of your classroom, book bags in hand, choosing the right degree could make this a reality. These days, it’s possible to study for a university degree and gain Qualified Teacher Status (QTS) at the same time, so keep a look out for the following: BA (Hons) degree or BSc (Hons) degree with QTS or Bachelor of Education (BEd) degree courses.
- Postgraduate Certificate in Education (PGCE)
If you already have an undergraduate degree in a subject relevant to the primary education such as English, Science or Maths, you can gain QTS by doing a PGCE. This is a one-year course offered at many UK institutions including colleges and universities and, while intense, is a great option for those who have higher education qualifications but are now looking for a more focussed career.
- School-led teacher training
Looking for something a bit more hands on? Then a school-led teacher training programme might suit your personality. There are many different routes you can take but the School-Centred Initial Teacher Training Programme (SCITT) lasts for one year and will lead to QTS. This option is aimed at people who already have a degree related to a national curriculum subject.
- School Direct
Like SCITT, School Direct course offer suitable applicants the perfect opportunity to learn on the job with schools offering two main options – the School Direct Training Programme and the School Direct Training Programme (with salary). You will need a degree for either of the options and at least three years of work experience for the latter. You’ll find more information via the UCAS Teacher Training website.
- Teach First
If you’re up for a challenge and not afraid to work in schools that are facing difficult social and economic problems, it might be worth considering the courses offered by Teach First – a charity which aims to provide all children with a decent education no matter what their background. Two-year teaching and leadership programmes are available to graduates with a degree of 2:1 or higher.
- Researchers in Schools
Aimed at people who have finished or are completing their research doctorate, Researchers in Schools is a two-year training route which leads to QTS. It’s currently a pilot scheme operating in London schools and all successful applicants will receive a salary while they train.
- Troops to Teachers
The Troops to Teachers training initiative is the ideal way for people leaving the armed forces to retrain as a primary or secondary school teacher. Aimed at non-graduates, this is a two-year course that combines work in the classroom with university study and you would receive a training salary over the two years. In order to apply you must have some training experience from your time in the armed forces and or qualifications as well as at least a week’s work experience at a school.
There are many routes into primary school teaching, so look what suits you best and follow your dream.
This is an editorial post.
These days we are a family split between home education and school and, having been caught in the cross fire of politic opinions regarding home education once, I now like to keep a much closer eye on what politicians are up to. Watching the turmoil visited on my children doing GCSEs and A Levels in school over the last 3 years has been an eye opener and, like many parents and teachers, I constantly wonder what will be the next change of policy that has to be navigated. Current government seem very determined on their path but could a radically different education system shape up if Labour got in next time? And what would be the impact?
Tim Aldiss writes on behalf of Enjoy Education – London private tuition consultants.
Jeremy Corbyn is now the head of the Labour Party and as we all know, his policy concepts are characteristically left wing. Whilst the Labour Party has occupied the close to centre left position for over a decade now, Jeremy Corbyn is making a stir by suggesting policies that hark back to much more traditional Labour values. Whether this is good or bad is up to the individual but it is certainly a direction that has got people talking.
High on the list of Corbyn’s policy priorities is the nationalisation of education. Now you might imagine that this is a moot point as education is almost universally free for any child up to the age of 16 and predominantly for anyone up to the age of 19. What Corbyn is suggesting though is a unified education body that offers free services right up to and including further education that’s accessible and free to all. This would make it much more in line with the NHS which as an organisation offers free health care to any UK citizen on point of access.
It is a lofty ideal and perhaps one that should be lauded but it doesn’t come without it’s own obvious set of problems. As with all major policy changes, budget is one of the key factors and with funding for further education being cut year on year to make money available for other budgetary concerns, where exactly will the money for free education come from? Corbyn’s proposal is to introduce a two percent increase in corporation tax that he suggests will work in conjunction with the introduction of the nationalised education system. Corbyn suggests that with free education would come a more skilled work force which would in turn pay for itself via the extra two percent corporation tax. There is a logic there but skeptics might question where the initial funding would come from as current applications for further and higher education are at an all time high.
Again it is up to the electorate to decide whether a nationalised education service is feasible or even beneficial. Most people would agree that the National Health Service is a good thing and as a banner to wave for the UK, it’s certainly one to be proud of. Are the stopping blocks in the way of a National Education Service to big to overcome though? Is the money available to fund it initially and will it pay for itself in the long run? Free education for all is an admirable goal of course but we will have to wait and see how these policies develop now that Corbyn is head of the Labour Party.
This is a collaborative post.
I was wondering about the origins of Mother’s Day, so I did a bit of digging on the internet. I discovered that it was first founded in the United States by Anna Jarvis as a celebration of motherhood and as a way for her to honor her recently deceased mother. The first Mothers day that we would recognise took place in 1908 although it had even earlier roots in the US from the endeavors of a lady called Julia Ward Howe. Julia who mooted the day it as a Mother’s Peace Day with reference to the American Civil War; tried to initiate a day honouring mothers in the late 1870′s. However, Mothering Sunday, the original celebration in the UK, originates in both Protestant and Catholic churches and is tied to the Church calendar, falling on the 4th Sunday in Lent. This explains why the US and the UK have different dates for what appears to be the same celebration but are actually quite different events. It is also tied to both the Greek and Roman culture and is associated with celebrations of Spring and maternal goddesses. In the recent history of the UK, Mothering Sunday was a day when young girls had a day off from their work in service and could walk home to spend the day with family, perhaps taking a small treat from their place of work or gathering flowers on the way home to present to their much loved mum.
So educationally, Mothering Sunday has plenty to offer. It can be used to tie into:-
- Greek or Roman culture
- Understanding calendars
- Differences between UK & US traditions
- Goddesses and mythology
- Victorians and girl/child employment
Likewise it is easy to see why so many of the crafts and gifts we make with children and this time of year have so much in common. Spring, rebirth, mothering and growth echo through so many of the celebrations at this time of year.
When planning crafts of educational activities for Mothering Sunday or Mother’s Day, crafts that include spring flowers, small gifts of food or baking, handmade items such as ones girls might have crafted from easily available materials in the past. It’s easy to see why a bunch of flowers and a box of chocolates have become the norm! These days though, a trip to The Works will undoubtedly turn up plenty of books with ideas of gifts to make for mum and while you are there, you will be able to buy plenty of art materials to make her a lovingly crafted card or gift. If she is anything like me, she would love the gift of a thoughtfully chosen book even more than sweeties.
Here are some of my favourite ways to spend Mother’s Day.
- A day out, with a picnic and it not being my job to make sure everyone has a hat, coat and sensible shoes.
- A family meal together, with plenty of time to chat, where I don’t have to remind people to clear the table.
- A few hours in a nice tidy living room, surrounded by my chicks (NOT ARGUING!) while I crochet.
- A family film under blankets with a chick under each arm and then they have an early bed so I get to do the same again with Daddy Duck.
This is a collaborative post.
It may seem as though summer has only just finished, but the festive season already looms large on the horizon and if you want to make the most of the celebrations, it’s helpful to start your preparations sooner rather than later.
For example, why not use some of the spare time you have with your children in the run-up to 25th December to create some homemade Christmas decorations? OK, so it’s easy to stock up on festive items in the shops, but your own versions will have that all-important personal touch. Also, getting stuck into craft sessions with your kids could save you cash!
Inexpensive yet impressive, paper chains have long been a festive favourite. You can use these decorations to add colour and cheer to Christmas trees, mantelpieces, doorways and more. The best thing; they’re simple to make. All you need are some scissors, paper and either glue or staples.
To make these chains, measure and cut strips of paper so that they are even in shape and size. The dimensions you choose will depend on the look you’re going for, but as a rough guide you can aim for pieces that are one inch wide and eight inches long. To create the chains, glue or staple the ends of the first strip of paper together to form a loop. Next, feed a second strip through the loop and join the ends. Continue this process until you have reached the desired length for your chain.
Tree decorations in the style of Christmas bells can also look fabulous and all you need to create these items are paper cups, ribbons, pipe cleaners, string, silver or gold paint and glitter. Firstly, paint your cups, adding some glitter for extra sparkle. Next, poke a hole in each base and feed through a length of pipe cleaner with a small loop at the bottom. Simply fix the bell to the loop using a small piece of string.
So that the items hang from your tree, create a large loop at the other end of the length of pipe cleaner that meets just above the cup. Meanwhile, to complete the objects, tie a neat bow around the pipe cleaner at the base of this loop.
Of course, these are just two ideas for decorations. There are plenty more for you and your kids to try out.