PGCE (Lower Primary)
Tell us a little bit about your background
After graduation, I spent a year providing special needs learning support at a primary school in Leicestershire before starting the PGCE programme at Leicester.
What attracted you to the Programme of Study here?
I studied my undergraduate degree at the University of Leicester and felt a real affinity with it and was reluctant to leave! I heard the PGCE at the University of Leicester had a good reputation and as I had always wanted to be a teacher, I decided to start the programme the following year!
Can you describe your experience of studying with the School of Education at Leicester?
Active! The sessions are mostly practical and ensure that everybody gets involved. They have given me great confidence and have shown me that I can do things I didn't know I could do before. We have met some really inspiring tutors who have been incredibly dedicated and supportive. My personal tutor has been a life line! Any problems were sorted straight away and there is always someone at the end of a email.
What do you enjoy most about your course?
I think the best part of the course is the quality of the staff. You will be working with the best in the field. What is really great about the tutors is that despite their extensive experience they have not become cynical about teaching but maintain an infectious enthusiasm for education. They are well informed about current research and developments and this has opened my mind to this knowledge also. Staff expectations are high and this pushes you to maintain high standards for your own performance and capabilities.
How has your course influenced your thinking about teaching?
I already knew about the extent of the pressures of teaching from work experience but the course has taught me about the responsibility of teaching, not only in terms of safeguarding and educating children, but also working with Teaching Assistants. Delegating work to TA's is an important part of a teacher's role as they can really enhance children's experiences in the classroom.
What are your plans for the future once you have completed your degree?
I have secured a teaching post at a local primary school for next September where I will be teaching a class of Year 1 pupils. I hope to keep my enthusiasm for teaching alive and continue to learn from my students as I progress with my career.
One piece of advice you would give to a new student starting here?
Be prepared to work hard and stay up-to-date with weekly reflections. If you're positive and maintain high expectations, you'll have a positive experience at Leicester.