A typical day for a PGDE student is quite busy, but always very rewarding!
The usual start time for placement would be 8.30am-4.20pm. I usually get home at around 6pm, with enough time to have dinner and complete either some lesson planning or additional work. Whilst training, I am teaching 3 lessons a day, each lasting 2 hours, with one lesson focused on 1:1 tutorials. In total, this amounts to 5 lessons including tutorial lessons. Despite the busy work life of a PGDE student, I find a lot of satisfaction in completing my day’s schedule and knowing I’ve done my job well.
So far, my training year has been positive, I believe my expectations of the PGDE course have been met. I pictured a supportive environment, with individual help to develop my teaching practice, which Warwick has definitely provided. We’re part of a small cohort of trainees which has its own benefits in itself, our learning is individualised and my confidence has increased in talking to new people and sharing experiences. We also have regular progress reviews and observation feedback which has been most helpful in encouraging me to try out new teaching strategies! It has been particularly helpful that my peers are from different areas of specialisms, this has broadened my knowledge about different teaching experiences and requirements.
My area of subject specialism in Religious Studies and I teach lessons on religion, philosophy and ethics. It has been particularly interesting to generate a variety of debates and understand different ways in which people think. Most of my classes link to beliefs and practices and unique ways in which individuals practice religious identity.
Before this course I was not aware of the standards that exist for teachers, hence my placement has been beneficial in allowing me to practice them out in the classroom.
The course and my placement have helped prepare me for a job in the FE sector as I have had quite a broad experience in terms of leading 1:1 sessions, tutorial and developing my knowledge about the requirements of FE students and also how to develop my professional practice against the professional standards. My future plans after completing the course are to pursue a career in teaching at an FE college and continue to improve my practice, which has worked out well for me so far since I have been offered a job at my placement!
My advice to future trainee PGDE teachers? Turn up on time- this is a great reflection on you! Build resilience, as some days, can be tough (however, it does get easier!) Also, start research and writing assignments on time, you do not want to have a mixture of assignment preparation and lesson planning at the same time!
About the Blogger
One of our Trainee Religious Education FE Teachers, shares with us their experience of training and placements on the PGDE (FE and Skills) course
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