It’s the time of the year when you’re starting to think ahead and make plans for the next academic year. Are you looking to gain experience in a workplace? Perhaps you would like to increase your confidence but not sure where to start. Or maybe, you’d like to improve on your transferable skills such as communication, organization and interpersonal skills but don’t want to commit to a long term opportunity.

If so, the Explore Teaching scheme may be just what you are looking for. The scheme is an exciting opportunity to gain valuable work experience in a school classroom. For 15 days you support a teacher in a school or college while exploring a future career in teaching. The placement can be completed in weekly blocks or instalments (eg one day per week) while you continue your studies.

You’ll contribute to raising the attainment of school pupils by working with small groups under the direction of the teacher. Prior experience is not necessary but what you WILL need to bring to the classroom is your enthusiasm for your subject, as well as your subject knowledge.

(Caption: Explore Teaching participants on their initial visit to the Sir Simon Milton Westminster UTC. Left to right: Tenisa Rana, Principal Karen Barker, Vice-Principal Mike Finn , Hydar Omar, Sanaa El-Haouzi)

Hydar Omar, final year Biological Sciences student, participated in the Explore Teaching scheme in the autumn term of 2017 and he has this to say about his experience:

‘I knew the moment Explore Teaching was announced that this would be an opportunity not worth missing due to the future possibilities the placements would open. Explore Teaching puts you in the teacher’s boots. It allows you to experience education from a different perspective, which I would personally merit as a progressive, enriching and bountiful experience.

It has allowed me to improve my one-to-one communication with school pupils which comes in handy when explaining new concepts and ideas. It has also taught me how to maturely identify and differentiate between students of varying abilities and has taught me how to build an effective scaffold when helping individuals learn, which has helped improve my learning.

The school I am at is very welcoming and they are also very understanding of my own academic situation. This allowed me to healthily balance my own studying with the placement.’

Sounds like such a great opportunity!

A wide range of subject areas are now available! One of the placement schools has recently requested help with PE. Could this be you?

The application for the next intake has opened, closing on the 30th June. To find out more and to apply, please see www.westminster.ac.uk/ExploreTeaching .

Hydar shared this final piece of advice: ‘If the thought of teaching or just volunteering within the London community network has ever crossed your minds, Explore Teaching could be the chance to widen your game and open the doors you may need to pass through later on.

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