My name is Meg, I am 32 and I am a trainee English teacher. I have always felt that I could write a book – isn’t there a saying out there that everyone has a book in them? When I was a teenager, I used to write pages and pages of fantasy writing, involving angels and time travelling. Then, I went through a phase of creating a character that was a younger version of Bridget Jones; none of my ideas were entirely original.
Then, in my early twenties, when I was working in a call centre, I met a woman who wrote a column for a magazine. She told me to write about what is true to me and that stuck with me. I was advised to observe the people and world around me and, being my mothers daughter (someone who has often been told to be quiet or is the life of the party, without a drink in her) that was a hard lesson to learn. But learn it I did. I stopped trying to write things that I thought people would want to read and wrote for myself instead. I found keeping a journal was a good way of keeping my appetite for putting pen to paper satisfied (then I met a significant other, who snooped, read them and then burnt them – mum was furious!). I spent years writing for me and keeping the notebooks, scraps of paper and even notes on my phone entirely for me. I got married, had babies and was in jobs that were just a means to put food on the table. My habit of always writing things down and making notes subsided (parenting is kind of all-consuming isn’t it?!)
Then I started teacher training.
I can honestly say that I have never in my entire life met a bunch of genuine hilarious people. There are 35 of us and we all look forward to Fridays where we can spend our days together. I am on a SCITT (school centred initial teacher training) course, we spend Monday – Thursday in school and then Fridays are at ‘uni’ where we complete training that helps us with our pedagogy (I see it as the theory side of teaching). We range in age and life experience and I feel that we compliment each other to the best of our abilities. Our course director is fantastic – she is approachable (literally at the end of the phone all day everyday), meaning the support we get is invaluable. I won’t say too much yet as she hasn’t seen my blog!
I always wanted to be a teacher – I had a Magic Weaver (Google it) who was an English teacher and he empowered me to believe that I am a writer. I was in Year 9 when the Twin Towers attack happened and I wrote a piece about it from the point of view of a little boy sitting on the shoulders of his father and my English teacher read it out to the class, I remember him being so proud of me my chest swelled with pride. He also gave me books to read outside of what we were studying and spent time after school to talk to me about them. He was firm with me though, I remember turning in a piece of homework in Year 11 that I’d completed the night before, he could tell, and he was so disappointed in me. I still have that ground-swallow me up feeling whenever I think about it.
So, this leads me to now – I finally have something that I want to write about and (I think) others want to read about. I want this blog to be a platform for other trainees in my position. I will write about experiences that I have had in my training year and then those that I have in my NQT year and beyond. I think reading this will be a good tool for teachers further along in their career too as it will give them an insight into what trainees and early year teachers are going through (it still takes me a while to write a lesson plan, whereas my partner told me they can change their plan on the spot depending on the “feel” of the class on the day!).
A few ground rules that I feel I should set out at the beginning:
- This will be a professional platform; I won’t share my private life. Views expressed are entirely my own.
- I will not mention any colleagues, schools or companies by name unless I have explicit permission
- I do not represent any school, education provider or company.