Welcome to another Student Employability Guest Blog! Read below about Lauren’s experience of undertaking a school placement as part of the Explore Teaching Scheme. If you, like Lauren, want to share your employability experiences in a blog, drop us an email on firstname.lastname@example.org with your idea and you could shine on the official careers blog, too. But for now, sit back, relax and enjoy reading the piece below.
Hi! My name is Lauren and as of July, I will be a Fine Art Mixed Media graduate! During my third year, I took part in the Explore Teaching Scheme, which gives Westminster students the opportunity to gain 15 days of work experience in a London school or college.
I found out about this programme through email. I had been interested in teaching for a long time but I didn’t have any experience in that field, so I jumped at this opportunity! I filled out the online application through the university’s Engage site and, about a week later, I was invited to an interview. After being successful at my interview, I attended three days of training in September, where the Explore Teaching team set up a number of workshops and lectures about teaching and about how children learn. The training was really informative and helped me in the classroom later on.
I started my placement at Harrow High School at the beginning of November. I worked a six period day every Thursday for 15 weeks with pupils from Years 7, 8 and 10. Working in a London school allows you to interact with students from a variety of backgrounds and cultures. Although sometimes this was difficult, as some students did not speak English as a first language or didn’t speak English at all, I really enjoyed the challenge and finding new ways to communicate the task to the students. It was also interesting to learn more about different cultures.
During my time at the school, I also had the opportunity to teach a number of Year 7 lessons. I was quite nervous about it, but it was a really good first (and first-hand!) experience of standing up in front of a class and delivering a lesson, as well as learning from any mistakes.
The main highlight of the experience was working with the students. It was really great to see them grow and develop over time. I would always leave the school at the end of the day feeling really pleased as you can see that your help is making a real difference to the students. In fact, it was quite sad saying goodbye at the end of the placement!
The Explore Teaching programme really helped to confirm my decision to pursue a career in teaching. And, as such, I have decided to do my PGCE in September in Cambridge, which I am really excited about!
Overall, I would really recommend anyone interested in teaching to take part in the Explore Teaching Scheme. It can really help you make an informed decision about whether teaching is for you and can make difference for your PGCE personal statement!
A big THANK YOU to Lauren for sharing her wonderful teaching experiences with all of us! It feels truly great to know you have made a difference to someone else’s professional growth and development. And on this note, we would like to add that the Explore Teaching Scheme is also suitable for those, who may not be fully interested in a teaching career, but wish to take their leadership skills to new heights. 😃
And remember that the Careers Team is here to help you with succeeding in your employability journey! You can find our contact details below: