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Life as a trainee teacher

Elle Ship

SCITT Training 2016-2017

Current Role: Teacher of Geography

Why Teaching?

Teaching had always been a potential career option for me ever since school. I think most of this came from the positive experience I had at school myself and the relationships I had with the teachers there. I had a great deal of respect for my teachers, their knowledge and the dedication they put into pushing students to reaching their full potential. It was this that first fuelled my ambition to follow in their footsteps and become a teacher.

Why SJC SCITT teacher training?

I chose the SJC SCITT for many different reasons. The main reason for my choice was the fact that it was school-based training; it felt like I could get a full appreciation of the role required as a teacher whilst getting the support from mentors and other established staff around me. After many years in education studying, I wanted a course where it was more immersive of a school environment rather than being based in a lecture theatre.

What are the rewards of the course? 

The key reward of the SJC SCITT course was how it prepared me for my NQT year and subsequent teaching years. With the school-based programme, I felt like a member of staff from the beginning and was treated like a member of staff by other colleagues and students. The gradual increase in timetable with the support of my mentors, made the progression seem natural. By the end of the course, I felt ready to lead lessons independently and handle a busy timetable workload which would soon be required of me in my first teaching job. Being based in a lead school allowed me to get to know the routines, staff and students well and it was extremely rewarding to not only see my own progression throughout the year, but that of the students that had been in my class too.


What are the challenges of the course?

It is undeniable that your teacher training year is challenging. One of the main challenges is keeping organised. Between planning lessons, updating your subject knowledge and collecting evidence against the teaching standards, it can be difficult to stay on top of everything. Time management is a skill that you will begin to master. It is important to keep organised in order to get everything done and remain doing the activities you like to do in your spare time, it is critical to maintain a healthy work-life balance.


Describe the support you received during your training with SJC SCITT.

The support I received during my training with the SCITT was amazing. The SCITT facilitators were incredibly supportive in all aspects of the training from advice on behaviour management in the classroom to interview practice. My subject mentor considerably helped me in developing my subject knowledge and understanding how to actually plan a lesson. It was great to be able to sit down with someone and share ideas in lesson planning. This support did not just end there, after each lesson I delivered there was a very important dialogue between me and my mentor on strengths of the lesson and targets for the next lesson. This personal feedback and professional advice considerably developed my teaching practice. However, it is not just designated mentors that were fundamental in my training year but also the staff in the school around me. It was extremely beneficial to be so supported by the people around me and to draw on the wealth of expertise around the school.


What leadership opportunities has the SCITT prepared you for since qualifying?

Since qualifying as a teacher, I have started to plan and deliver SCITT training sessions for the subsequent cohorts of trainee teachers. I feel that the support that the programme provided enabled me to feel confident enough to deliver sessions myself and having had a personal experience of the training programme, impart some of the things that helped me during my training.

Want to join Elle making a difference in the classroom? Apply now to join St Joseph’s College SCITT!