Teaching School News
Teachers for Tomorrow
Redborne’s teaching school has been offering our sixth form students opportunities to get a taste of life in the classroom from the other side for many years now. This successful programme has been taken up by many students. One student, Amy, described her experiences for us:
When I was in Year 12, I decided to take part in the T4T programme. I wanted to do this because I wasn’t 100% sure on the career I wanted to take when finishing my A-Levels and leaving school.
I had an inkling that I wanted to teach when I left school. This was due to me completing 2 weeks work experience in Year 10 in the foundation stages at Templefield Lower School, which I really enjoyed. I am also a Brownie leader, which has given me experience with children to influence my decision.
I chose to do the T4T programme in the History department, teaching Year 9 students. This allowed my self confidence to increase, allowing me to believe in myself more when delivering starters and helping the students with their work. It helped me to confirm that I wanted to go into teaching when I leave school, helping me to choose what course I want to do at University and allowing me to start the process of choosing the University I want to go to.
I would recommend anyone that is thinking they might want to go into teaching to apply to take part in the programme. I had a great time and really began to connect with the Year 9s and the teacher I was with. It will certainly help someone to decide whether teaching is right for them or not.
This year, Redborne welcomed paid interns for the summer term. They were all students currently engaging in STEM related degrees and this is what they had to say about their experience with us :
Our internship was a four week course that ran from 18th June to 13th July 2018, and was focused on STEM subjects; predominantly Maths. All applicants needed to be in their penultimate year of university, studying a relevant degree. Overall the internship gave a glimpse of what teaching entails - it involved supporting Maths lessons, shadowing teachers, teaching small parts of lessons, and participating in professional studies workshops.
We were attracted to the role for the following reasons:
- To get experience working in a different professional environment
- To see if teaching is suited to us as a future career choice
- It opens many potential career paths
- It can help us develop new transferrable skills.
Throughout the first week we sat in a variety of different lessons, ranging from Maths to Biology to Religious studies, and varying ability sets too. We looked at a variety of techniques teachers use for behaviour management, differentiating for mixed abilities, and how teachers assess students’ progress during the lesson. We also got involved in Redborne’s DofE assessment expeditions, and sports days at local middle schools. For those of us that attended Redborne a few years ago, it was interesting to see it from a different perspective.
In the second week there was a major focus on content knowledge, especially in Maths. The introduction of the new 9-1 GCSE has seen a massive change in the curriculum – even since we were at school. We learnt and analysed which different skills are needed to achieve success in the new GCSE, compared to the ones we sat. We also began supporting lessons as teaching assistants, helping those students who were struggling.
We ran a Maths puzzle day for the year 9s – we were in charge of planning the activities, designing the resources, and managing the pupils when they were completing the different challenges. It was much harder to organise than we anticipated, but very rewarding!
In the third week there was a focus on supporting children of differing abilities. We learnt about gifted and talented students, and ways to challenge them, and we also learnt about the process of differentiation for when a class is mixed ability. We got to spend time with SEN students at both Woodland and Redborne and we accompanied school trips and excursions, and saw the support that is required academically, physically, and emotionally.
In the fourth week we took on a more advanced role in the classroom. Some of us led starter activities, whilst others took whole lessons. During the week we reflected on the whole internship and received feedback from Maths teachers and our mentors. On the final day we each prepared and taught a 30-minute lesson on complex topics related to Maths.
The internship was a worthwhile and rewarding experience. It has given us a true insight into teaching and opened our eyes to the opportunities available. It is definitely not an easy path to choose but having spoken to so many members of staff it is clear that teaching is a fulfilling job, which they enjoy, and their passion for their subjects shines through. For some, this is more than a career, and they all give so much back to the students. It was a privilege to be a part of Redborne Upper School, and to experience the commitment for and love of teaching. Several of us will be considering teaching careers after this, and the rest of us will keep it in mind for the future!
Written by James, Conor, Chris, Lauren, Matt, Sam and Maddison
For further details about paid internships in 2019, please see our interns page on our website or follow RTSA on Twitter for updates!
RTSA offers a suite of CPD opportunities ,as well as bespoke training and consultation from our SLEs. Please see Bedfordshire CPD online portal for up to date information and booking or contact Teresa Farrow at the teaching school. Please also see our SLE page for details on our specialisms.