What's your job like?
My current role is challenging but extremely rewarding. The key skills it requires are coaching and mentoring, leadership, communication, dealing with conflict, teamwork and time management. I am learning so much in my new job role and am fortunate to be well supported and surrounded by a super team.
How did you get into this job?
I began my teaching career in KS2, before a previous headteacher said they thought I would be great in early years. I moved to Nursery and worked on raising the profile to fill spaces which we had. I also started my Masters in Educational Leadership and Management. It gave me an in depth insight into current affairs, different theories and models of leadership. It prepared me to take the next step in my career.
I progressed to work in a different school as the Early Years Leader with multiple subject coordination. Here I established a brand new Nursery which was judged outstanding in all areas by Ofsted after only 9 weeks of opening. I also studied for an advanced specialism in early years, so as to gain expert knowledge and understanding in this field.
At the start of this academic year I became Deputy Head and Reception Teacher of a school in Walsall, which I am thoroughly enjoying.
Why did you choose this career?
To me, the early years in particular is an amazing opportunity to ensure early intervention and to lay the foundations in place for both the rest of the school journey and life outside of school. Building relationships with children and watching them achieve what they thought was impossible is the best satisfaction anyone could have. Giving structure and a safe environment to those whose lives are perhaps unstable outside of school helps us to make a difference in society. Teaching children skills to be able to do jobs which haven't even been created yet keeps us on our toes and in a privileged position.
The long hours and hard work are all paid off in the knowledge that you have enabled the children in your care to have the best possible start to education and life.
What's the best thing about teaching?
Without doubt it is working with the children. The children are the reason we all get out of bed in the morning, to create exciting learning opportunities and to inspire the next generation. I love the creativity of the early years and in being able to teach to the interests of the children.
I know that if an activity excited me, it will my children. Seeing the children grow and progress, supporting their families and wider community is incredibly rewarding. Teaching is a powerful job, we have the power to change a child's life for the better, to give them new experiences and opportunities like never before.
What's Warwick like?
I would highly recommend Warwick. The staff have all been incredible over the years I have spent there, in particular Dr Bob Smith who mentored me through my dissertation. Warwick is a prestigious University which offers an outstanding level of teaching and care. Having had such a positive start to my student teaching career, combined with hard work and dedication, has enabled me to progress to my current position.