If you can read this, thank a teacher…

…by Amy / from Scotland / studying Primary Education / 3rd Year (UG)

Becoming a primary school teacher is one of my main goals in life and for my third year I’ve stepped into the shoes of my dream job. The main attraction of studying at the University of Edinburgh was the full year I would spend in a primary school. Over the past few months, I have been student and teacher – something that many are not given the opportunity to do.

I was just as nervous on the first day of placement as the new primary ones starting school. Luckily, I wasn’t thrown into the deep end of teaching and was given a couple of weeks to get to know the 27 children in my primary four class. Having the opportunity to observe an experienced teacher from day one of the school year was invaluable and allowed me to see how things really should be done.

I started getting into teaching by taking small groups before slowly moving up to a lesson a day, then a whole day and eventually, after Christmas, doing consecutive weeks of full responsibility. I have been able to observe in different stages within the school, learn from specialist teachers and work closely with all the staff. These are things that university classes themselves aren’t able to give us and the experience of being in the school as a member of staff has taught me so much.

That is not to say that this year has been straightforward – I’ve been working a full time job and have been a student at the same time. It was not easy to be teacher in the day and then to come home and turn on student mode – but essays, research and presentations had to be done. There has been a lot of stress, worry and the feeling of defeat, which is the reality of teaching. It is hard! However, this year has been amazing and I love teaching. I have developed from a nervous pupil into the confident teacher, and I cannot wait to have a class of my own.

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