Laura is new to the world of supply teaching, but after hearing great things about the flexibility of the role and how she can adapt it to her lifestyle, she unlocked her potential and decided to take on the challenge. She has spent 5 years in the education sector as a Foreign Languages teacher and registered with CER in July 2021.
Why work on supply?
Having recently relocated to her home in Wales, Laura quickly realised that supply would be the perfect fit for her. She said: ‘‘Friends had suggested it and explained the benefits of working on supply. Due to my other commitments, the timings of the day work really well for me. I can leave at 3.30pm if I need to, which is a really nice change.’’
After spending 3 years at the same school and becoming familiar with her peers, starting her first day of supply was a nerve-wracking experience for Laura, but she took it in her stride.
“I faked being confident! I was nervous. Here I knew nothing about lessons, timings of the day, behaviour management. I like being in control and organised, so it was quite a shock to the system. But it’s been brilliant! I can’t believe how well it’s gone.’’
Every day is different
One of the most enjoyable parts of Laura’s role is building a rapport with her students and seeing them get excited about her lessons. She hopes to build that core relationship with her class, despite only being with them for a short while.
She added: “I’m covering one staff member, so I have the same group of pupils. I’ve told them that I won’t be your teacher all the time, but the same rules apply. No two lessons are going to be the same and every morning you know you will have a story to tell at the end of your working day.’’
Laura is passionate about injecting fun into her lessons, a key part of her teaching that she believes keeps the children engaged.
‘’Working off their excitement inspires me to teach even more. They are keen to learn. You can have banter with the class and really bounce off each other. Lessons need to be more fun and you really have to have passion for the subject that you are teaching. I make sure I look just as excited as I was learning it for the first time. They will work hard if they see that you are putting the effort in.’’
Having those ‘lightbulb moments’ are something that tend to happen daily in Laura’s classroom. One class in particular comes to mind when she reflects on the moments she is proud of in her career.
“I took over a Year 11 class that was struggling to just get a grade. They hated me because I gave them so much homework! They worked so hard in class and they all came out with a grade, so that was a proud moment – I’ll never beat that year!’’
A trip down memory lane
Laura’s love for teaching is inspired by her own experiences at school. The passion and drive she saw from her own teachers, still resonate with her today and has helped her become the teacher she is today.
“I tried to rebel against the idea of a being teacher because people always told me when I was younger that’s what I would be.
“I did have a teacher that really inspired me, my old English teacher, Mrs Milward. She had fantastic subject knowledge and a great teaching style. She had been in education for over 30 years and was still so passionate. I try to get my pupils as excited about my lessons as she made me! But I’m maybe not as strict!”
“I told you so”
When asking Laura about why people should consider a career in education, she reflects on the rewarding part of the role and seeing her pupils succeed and come out of their shell.
“A lot of people may not think it is for them because they feel they don’t have the confidence for teaching and would crumble in front of a class, but there are so many routes into teaching. Weigh up your options.
“There really is no better feeling on results day when you see them get the results they wanted. You’ve helped them achieve that and it’s opened doors for them. It’s almost a smug ‘I told you so’ when they get the grade they didn’t think they could.’’
Why get into teaching?
In the short time that Laura has been with CER, she has received ongoing support from her consultant Lee, who ensured that he matched her to the perfect school.
Laura said: ‘’CER is so efficient, they got work for me straight away. They are very considerate, always calling me to check-in and have regular updates and feedback from the school, which is a real confidence boost. They are extremely knowledgeable and have strong relationships with their schools.’’
Laura’s positive attitude and joy for teaching are clear to see and having fun with the pupils, as well as providing valuable learning is a great advert for those considering teaching as a career.
‘’If you’re thinking of doing it…do it! If you already have the mentality for it, you will enjoy it. Do your research and don’t be afraid to ask for help. It can be overwhelming at first, but it is a brilliant career.
“Be silly with the kids! So then if they laugh at you, at least they won’t forget what you’ve done!’’
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