How Have You Found Your School Placements? By Maths Scholar 2023/24

Starting my current school placement at the end of September, I am now in my final week and can’t believe it. I have mixed feelings about leaving. I am very sad to be saying goodbye to my pupils and colleagues that I have built up great relationships with. I am apprehensive to be leaving the comfort of my now familiar daily and weekly routines. However, I am looking forward to entering a new school, seeing the differences between the two, meeting new people and (hopefully!) overcoming new challenges.  

I am on the PGCE course, so I started off with 3 weeks training at the University with the rest of the Maths trainees. We then splintered off to our placement schools which we attend Monday - Thursday, with Fridays at the university. I have really enjoyed my placement school. It has been a massive learning curve and at times rather tiring, but very rewarding and I feel I have grown as a teacher a lot in my time there. I have found my department to be greatly supportive, friendly, and welcoming. I have never felt different or not part of the team and am treated like a valued member of staff. This comes with high expectations, but it feels good to be included in the department like this. 

My mentor and other classroom teachers have given me some very useful and constructive feedback over my months here. It has been rewarding to reflect back and see how my teaching practice has improved, as has my confidence and comfort in the classroom. That is not to say every lesson goes smoothly, as it certainly doesn't! However, I feel my first placement has set me on my teaching career positively, and I am excited for the next steps. 

Before starting, I was worried about students seeing me as a trainee teacher and "not a proper" teacher. However, none of them have seemed to realise, or care about that at all! They accepted me as a teacher of the school. I have gotten to know my students well and am sad to be saying goodbye. Getting involved with extra-curricular activities certainly has helped strengthen some of these relationships, such as helping out at Maths Homework Club, or speaking with pupils and their parents at Parents' Evening.  

I have really enjoyed being in the school environment and supporting the pupils of the school with their learning journey. It has been great to put into practice the theories we have been learning about at university. My main piece of advice would be to really get stuck in and get involved as much as you can. Also, never be afraid to ask questions or ask for help if you need it. Your colleagues are there to support you!  

By Maths Scholar 2023/24 



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