What advice would you give someone considering a career as a secondary mathematics teacher?
Embarking on a journey to train and become a secondary school mathematics teacher is not a decision to be taken lightly. Therefore, the biggest favour you can do for your future self is to make an informed decision as to whether teaching is right for you. The most full-proof method of figuring this out is to shadow a secondary school mathematics teacher, or if you can, undertake some work experience at a school immersing yourself in some of the daily tasks running within the school. This experience will give you a taster into being on the other side of the school tables, the range of abilities, duties, responsibilities and the overall learning environment.
Moreover, start your application early. No matter what route you are selecting to begin your career in teaching, starting early will always be an advantage. The remarkable Get into Teaching website has experienced advisors who will help you through your application process including, interviews, reading personal statements and arranging placements. It is free to register, you do not want to miss out on this hidden gem.
Furthermore, if you are committed to this career path, why not apply for a Mathematics Teacher Training Scholarship? Whilst providing financial support, there are countless other perks including, superb professional resources, memberships of professional bodies and invites to exclusive CPD events. You really cannot get this kind of support hub anywhere else.
Finally, be ready for some highs and lows, as two days of teaching will never be the same. You will have to adapt in the moment, make judgements, manage an entire class of students and provide them with the essential skills to learn and prosper. As time passes and you gain more experience, these situations become second nature, but in the beginning, there will be lots of techniques to experiment with and learn. Having said all of this, I enjoy learning new skills and gaining varying experiences each day with the satisfaction of having made a difference in a young person’s life. Hearing a student say ‘I understand it now’ is probably the best praise a student could give me as a trainee teacher. Secondary mathematics teaching is an admirable career to pursue, and having good intentions for your reasons why will always motivate you to do the best job you can.
By Savda Panvala
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