Posts

Neil reflects on starting teacher training in his 40s

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  Why you won’t find me trying to look like Elvis   I’ve often thought about grabbing a bottle of Just for Men. Then I remember that my dad did the same thing, once, and ended up looking like Elvis Presley.   I’m sensitive about my age and I’m not even that old – I’m 43. The silver hair, as I’ve been told, gives the game away. But I should rejoice in this, if that’s all it is that makes me look more mature.    I’m a bit less anxious and neurotic than in my teens; I’m physically healthier than I was in my twenties; I’m fitter and stronger, now, than I was in my thirties. I don’t smoke, I don’t drink that much - my skin is grateful for both. I have a zest for life. I still wear Adidas Gazelles.   My age never used to be an issue in my previous life. There were six of us who started at the BBC at the same time as twentysomethings. We celebrated landmark birthdays together; we went to each other’s weddings; we celebrated the arrival of our children. The anxiety over leaving and then later

Lucy shares her tips for juggling ITT and parenting

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Carina shares her experiences of the #InspiringDiversity Conference

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  Diversity, Equity and Inclusion day    Four of the most important days in our teacher training year have to be our “Diversity, Equity and Inclusion” days. I promise, Adam has not paid me to write this… Amongst the entire 21/22 cohort of Inspiring Leaders, I had the absolute pleasure of listening to several amazing speakers, talking all things diversity. Welcoming us to NTU for the day, was our own Adam Brett who introduced us to a quick video on diversity (#InclusionStartsWithI). If you want to watch it again and review those statistics, I definitely recommend doing so… with a pack of tissues.    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2g88Ju6nkcg   Kicking off the day, we had the amazing Claire Birkenshaw, a Childhood and Education lecturer at Leeds Beckett University.    Claire explained so succinctly what DEI is, why it is important and most of all, what our role as educators is, when it comes to DEI.    I cried and I was left speechless, in absolute awe of this keynote speech. The passio

MaeMae shares her takeaways from the DEI Conference

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The title of ‘Being a Woman in Education’ probably does not scream out to any male readers – well, I know for a fact that it does not scream out to any male readers because there was not a single male in the room for this workshop! Allies are an essential force when it comes to any issue about power imbalances, so I had certainly hoped that there would be at least a couple of male attendees. Azuraye Williams, who ran the workshop, emphasised the importance of being educated on the challenges of being a woman in the workplace, which is why it would have been useful for male trainees to attend. Small, seemingly insignificant things, such as choice of language, can be weaponised against women in the workplace. Azuraye questioned what the difference is between being aggressive and assertive. The answer? Your gender or your race. As a trainee English teacher, I am always aware of language connotations in novels, plays, and poetry. After reflection, I am maybe not as conscious when it comes

Katie's advice for next year's trainees

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Comparison is the thief of joy - Nadia Scola

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  My Advice to New Trainees   “Comparison is the thief of joy”   SCITT 2020/2021 graduation was last week and as I stood amongst the most amazing cohort of people. I took a moment to question how I qualified, when all my peers around me were not only brilliant, but excelling in what they do best. As I drove home, this kept lingering in my head, and I began to compare myself to every single person in the cohort. As I sat down, I noticed a sign in my dining room “Comparison is the thief of joy”; this quote was said to me on my first day at NTU. So as an Art teacher, I naturally asked a fellow artist to create a sign for me as a keepsake for my teacher training year. This was a reminder to me to not be hard on myself as it’s not a helpful attitude to have. So, one of my biggest pieces of advice to you is please do not be hard on yourself. You have begun the hardest journey, and it won’t be easy, but it’s so worth it. Once you see the impact you have had on one individual, that buzz is add

Neil reflects on induction day for the class of 2021/2022!

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Life is full of possibilities. It’s also full of choices and you never really know, until later, whether you’ve made the right decision. But if it feels good, then that’s positive news.   I made the decision that I wanted to join the Redhill SCITT programme and become a teacher, back in January. I had left the BBC, where I had been since 2000, in December, and while things felt exciting, it was scary too. Had I made the right decision?   I contacted the team by e-mail, registering my interest in doing the course. The next day I had a lovely chat with Sally Barfoot (Director of the Redhill Teaching Hub) and then later, Adam Brett (SCITT Hub Lead). I was struck by their warmth and encouragement. They made me feel I could do it. They made me feel wanted.    Induction day, the first day of my new career, my new life. I was nervous. I hadn’t been in a room with other people, due to Covid, for about 15 months. Did I still know how to speak to people, how to behave? It was great to be in the