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Train To Teach

Life as a beginning primary teacher

We spoke to Tom, Beginning Teacher at Dordon Primary School

"Teaching is the most fulfilling job I have had. My year training with the CAT IoE allowed me to grow and develop alongside the children I was working with."

Tom, Primary 2023

Why did you choose to teach?

I chose to train to teach after initially being reluctant. I completed a degree in Primary PE and Sports Development and was the only person on my course who didn’t want to become a teacher. My experience after graduating, in the different roles I had, made it clear that what I enjoyed most was building relationships with the children I worked with. This was limited during and after Covid and so I decided to give it a shot.

What did you do before you chose to get into teaching?

I completed a graduate trainee programme with Leicestershire and Rutland Sport delivering the school games programme to primary and secondary pupils and delivering and designing physical activity programmes to all members of the community for a District Council. I then worked for a county council creating and implementing a school travel programme to encourage more children to actively travel to school.

What did your training in school look like?

I opted for the school based route, as I already felt I had experience of working with schools and wanted that hands on experience of regularly being in school. My training year was completed over two partner schools and encompassed experience in year 4, year 1 and lastly, year 5.

I taught elements of the curriculum from the first week of my training year and this gradually built up throughout the year to teaching full days and weeks. I was also given ownership of the direction of projects through foundation subjects, which gave me the opportunity to gain experience in medium- term planning, whilst being supported by an experienced colleague.

What other opportunities did you have outside the classroom?

Spending a significant amount of time in one school meant that I had the opportunity to support the extra-curricular activities that take place regularly in school. Throughout the year, I supported overnight trips, a year 6 residential, clubs at school and sporting events and competitions. I really valued these opportunities to be able to see and work with pupils outside the confines of the classroom and the typical school day.