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Amy is a Primary Teacher working in schools in London through Protocol Education. Amy has got a class of her own. Read about her process of finding a long term role.

And it came to pass…

I chose supply teaching over regular classroom teaching after completing my PGCE almost two years ago, as the chance to see a variety of schools before settling down and taking on a class of my own. I have lost count of the number of schools I have worked in; these include SEN specialists and a free school and have been situated all across London and even Hertfordshire. I have had to tear myself away from places and children who have begged me to return, I have sighed with relief after signing out of a school where a child threatened me with a ruler. I have been bitten by a child whose main language biting and scratching – and the occasional smile. I have in short, arrived at the point in my life when if I see a child of primary school age, I assume I have at some point taught him and immediately check my demeanour.

Quite often on leaving a school, I would hold court with myself “could I work there?” I’d ask myself. I must admit here, that I have a bit of a phobia of forms and the application process. By keeping to supply teaching, I was able to maintain a steady income and not have to fill anything out, and as the months turned into almost years, I decided it was time to bite the bullet.

I let Protocol Education know that I was looking for long-term work, and suddenly I felt the gears change and I was thrust into CV-writing, form filling and school visits. The comfort zone seemed far behind and a class of my own, a growing reality. Suddenly I was lesson-planning, drawing on my experience of class-teaching and the words of my PGCE mentor. “But what are they going to learn?”

It has been just over a week since I got the call from Protocol Education, informing me that the job was mine. I travelled home in a daze, almost struggling to take in the information: my own class at last. Immediately my mind was filled with ideas for the classroom, ideas for lessons, ideas for the children. I have bought books, stationery, ransacked my PGCE files and the internet for resources. This is after all what I had in mind when I applied for my PGCE back in 2011. This has been a long process I realise, having just celebrated my 35th birthday, I realise that it was on my 30th that I announced to the world that I was thinking of leaving bookselling and training as a teacher. It has taken exactly five years from idea to fruition and these five years have changed me in ways I never could envisage.

It is springtime. Beautiful spring and I am nesting like the birds I like to watch from my balcony. My nest is a happy, effective classroom in a school I love. It is not a permanent role, but nothing is permanent and I am determined to make this summer term the happiest in my teaching life and the happiest learning memory for the children I am going to teach after the holidays end.

Right! I am off to buy a soft-toy fox for the children to name and take home. They are going to take turns to keep the fox’s diary, and I am at pains not to call the diary “What does the Fox say?” 

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Tags: AmyC, London, teacher, long-term, supply, primary, choices, experiences, classroom, PGCE, spring, summer

Category: Australian Teachers

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