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Try something new today

Emma is a Teaching Assistant who works for Protocol Education in WolverhamptonEmma inspires us to take up a new challenge. Next time you get that call say yes!

Try something new today.

I remember the first time I had a class to myself.  A reception class of no more than 15 children.  The class teacher made an excuse and left me alone.  I thought my heart would burst out of my chest, it was beating so fast!  It didn't, obviously and a few children even learned a new phoneme or two.  It's scary, trying something new.  To step outside of your comfort zone and doing something you have never done before.  But how are you what you like and what you don't like if you don't try it?  Feel the fear and do it anyway!

Eek! A new curriculum

So after a while I got used to teaching in the foundation stage, I was happy and then it was time to move on to key stage one.  Eek! A new curriculum.  Older children! New ways of teaching.  But I observed the teacher and tried it out for myself. After a while I got used to it and once I'd qualified I started teaching through Protocol.  I'll only teach foundation and key stage one, I told them. And that's what happened.. For a while.  Then I got a call.  Could I teach year three? But, but that's key stage two! I couldn't do that! Could I? Another new curriculum, even older faces and new ways of teaching. But, you know what? I loved it! But year three was old enough, that was my absolute limit.

Then I had a call...

After three years of teaching (4 if you include the PGCE year) I realised that actually, it wasn't quite what I wanted to do.  So I took a step back and started working as a TA. But only up to year 3, that was my limit. Then I had a call.. Could I work in years 5 and 6? What!? I couldn't do that! For some reason I had convinced myself that the work would be too difficult.  Which for a person with a post graduate degree is ridiculous. But I told myself these things and imposed my own limits. But I felt the fear and with shaking legs I entered the year 6 classroom and... Loved it! And no, the work wasn't too complicated.  Not even the maths, which was never my strong point. 

Yet another call...

Brilliant.  I had mastered my fears and could work at any age (up to 11) and that was great.  I was comfortable.  Then I had a call.. Would I do a few days at a special school? So I ummed and arrred and ummed some more and with sweaty palms I went to work with teenagers with special needs.  Scary! Except, it wasn't.  I really enjoyed it.  Ok, I thought I can do primary and special needs, but that's my limit. 

Something new... again!

Then I got a text.. Would I be interested in doing some invigilation work at a high school? And do you know what? I didn't umm or arrr and with my head held up high and a confident stride today I walked into a high school and invigilated a maths GCSE paper. And yes, I loved it.

They say the sky is the limit.  But I say why stop there, when there are so many stars in the universe. 

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Tags: EmmaH, Protocol Education, New, Challenges, Learning, Foundation Stage, Curriculum,

Category: Australian Teachers

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