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is anyone a secondary english teacher? changing subject as teacher question

(12 Posts)
overthemill Thu 07-Jul-11 21:14:45

i have just got my PGCE. It qualifies me to teach 14+. But I have seen the perfect job for me in a school not too far away that is lovely and they need a teacher of English. Happy to take an NQT (ie like me) but what do you think I need to emphasise in my application? I have degree in english plus another degree and years of work experience and then about 8 years ago turned into a trainer a work and now do it freelance - all kinds of work related stuff for a range of staff.

But english is my first love and i would really like the chance to teach it at A level/GCSE and younger.

Going for school visit tomorrow, but what should I emphasise in my application?

)btw i can spell but am rubbish typist!)

freerangeeggs Thu 07-Jul-11 22:02:41

I know several people who are English teachers, but who don't have English degrees. I imagine you're probably in a better position than they are when it comes to applying for English jobs.

If I remember my applications correctly, very little of what they're looking for is subject specific. It's mostly generic stuff about formative assessment and so on.

I would make the fact that you have an English degree really prominent. You should also look into the English curriculum. The specifications documents are available on the websites of the exam boards - a new English GCSE has just been rolled out and it requires controlled assessments rather than coursework, so make sure you're familiar with that and the ramifications of it.

What is your PGCE subject? Is there such a thing? I qualified in Scotland and you can only teach the subject you've trained in there so I'm not sure how it works for NQTs in England, but some subjects will lend themselves more easily to a switch.

PotteringAlong Thu 07-Jul-11 22:05:19

You need to talk about your experience teaching English and big up that - what's your PGCE in? Have you done any English at all? Try and link whatever you've taught on your teaching practice to English.

IHeartKingThistle Thu 07-Jul-11 22:17:07

I was always under the impression that once you have the PGCE you're qualified to teach any subject you're qualified in to at least A Level. I have no idea where I got that impression from though!

I teach English with a Linguistics degree. My PGCE was English though.

overthemill Fri 08-Jul-11 11:13:39

well, had school visit today and hey are open o me but obv concerned that i have no experience teaching English o this age group. BUT they have invited me in for a teaching session so they can observe me! Am so pleased, at visit talked about my broad life experience (as i'm not your average NQT) and he was def interested in what i could bring to the mix. he asked about my experience of inclusion/differentiation (good) and teaching methods plus session planning. he's giving me yr 10 group for microteach so not too far from my comfort zone.

my subject - for pgce (pce) which is what i have, you aren't subject specific so its all pedagogy, planning, teaching, assessment, evaluation generically and you have to show how you apply it in your own area of teaching. so it is easier to switch between subjects in fact but doesn't give you specific experience that can help for job interview stuff! New wolfe report (and Gove's reaction to it) allows all qualifications in teaching to be treated as same so that best teacher for setting can be employed. Quite freeing but will need handling for people like me!

Anyway, any hints and tips for yr 10 microteach??? excited and terrified all at once...

MadEyesMadeLiesEvanesco Sat 09-Jul-11 00:51:41

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overthemill Sun 10-Jul-11 15:05:39

thanks! I have been given a year 9 group (no yr 10 group at right day), 40 mins and a topic:

paragraphs and connectives. That is fine, I have a session plan done now but mildly anxious about the following all based on lack of knowledge of age group:

can i ask them to put name stickers on so I can ask them direct questions?
is work in pairs ok for this age group?
what about small group work?
would a starter activity where they have to hold up correct answers to questions be suitable or would they be unlikely to 'co-operate'?

How can I differentiate adequately without knowing their abilities - i have plenty of ideas about how to do that but not quite sure how to actually implement if I don't know the class in advance (I do this easily with older students but this age group I 'm unsure whether I will be able to 'read' as well)?

Does that make sense? I am so grateful for advice _ I really want to perform well - if i end up not getting it that will be ok but want to do my best!

still excited and a bit nervous.

MadEyesMadeLiesEvanesco Sun 10-Jul-11 16:03:11

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overthemill Sun 10-Jul-11 16:12:25

my pgce isn't for this age group so that's why i am asking these questions - have never taught kids this young before. my pgce didnt cover this age group. so while totally familiar with all concepts its my unfamiliarity with age group that makes me unsure. Totally happy with subject that i've been given to teach.

the group is mixed, i know that but 40 minutes doesnt give me very long to work out who is what ability so although i have the extension activities planned i'm not sure how to gauge it in just the one session. I have plan for pair work, group work, individual work with peer assessment then whole group plenary but not sure if this age group will manage these types of activity

thanks anyone

MadEyesMadeLiesEvanesco Sun 10-Jul-11 16:17:37

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overthemill Sun 10-Jul-11 16:41:58

brilliant! thats just what i needed to know, tried session on my own very unwilling yr10 boy who said it seemed ok (but he's a bright dyslexic!)

overthemill Tue 12-Jul-11 22:34:01

had a brilliant session today - really enjoyed it - mildly nervous but not once i got in my stride, nice feedback and will hear tomorrow. if i dont get it i've still learnt loads. thank you for all your hints and tips

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