I would like to hear from any one who has done the NCT course to become an antenatal educator.
Could you tell me you how the course is set up? Is it evening classes and weekends and some homeworking or is it more intensive? I am asking because I work full time and have two DCs, am I overambitious? (I am used to studying and absolutely passionate about pregnancy childbirth etc so it wouldn't feel like a chore.)
Any advice, feedback, stories about your experience would be massively appreciated
Hi there. I started it last year, but dropped out for various reasons.
What level of education / study have you reached in the past? Having done a degree, I didn't find it massively academically demanding, to be honest, and they certainly ease you in at the beginning. The real workload comes towards the end, when you are running courses and being assessed on your lesson plans etc (or so I was told by fellow students). If anything, I think they stretch it out too much. It takes minimum 2 and a half years (most people take longer) and I really didn't feel it warranted that much time spent (compared to, say, midwifery, which doesn't take that much longer and gives you all the medical knowledge medical training on top of all the other stuff...).
The pros for me:
- it is the most widely recognised antenatal training in this country -the NCT is a largely respected organisation (especially among the medical profession - nurses, midwives, HVs etc), so your training comes with a ;good name' - NCT classes can be very popular and over subscribed in some areas, so there is a guarantee in some areas of work
The cons: - you are tied to the NCT for a few years afterwards if they pay for your training (you can self fund, though) - most local NCT groups will require you to help out a fair bit if you do want them to fund your training - not a 'con', really, but something to be aware of - there is a definite pressure to conform to certain NCT ideals . You'll feel this more strongly in some branches ./ with some antenatal teacher trainers than others, obviously. I felt very strongly that they didn't cover c-section as a 'what if this happens to me' topic, and promoted some quiet unrealistic ideas about BF-ing, too. This had implications for some women later on down the line which I didn't like. -in some areas, the NCT struggles to fill it's classes - worth checking what the deal is in your area..?
Another plus - most of the people in my tutor group loved their training and were very happy wioth it
Another con - if you are slightly gobby / maverick about things, you might get bored of the whole 'on message' NCT vibe.
Good luck. I am still contemplating becoming an antenatal teacher (and which route would be best to take in order to achieve it) - it's such a rewarding thing to do!
I stopped teaching once i got a more intellectually challenging job - I did it for quite a few years though and really loved it, and the skills have proved useful (group work, teaching adults)- I really missed it when I first stopped. If you were hoping to make much money then check what demand is like in your area, it's not really well paid unless you teach several courses at a time. I recognise some of what MrsM says- but personally I spent a lot of time covering pain relief and C-sections and not being judgemental about either... I was already involved with a local branch, and when Dcs were little it was a lifeline for me so felt OK about giving back to that- not sure how long I would have felt that say, when youngest was in junior school.
*Mrs Mattie*. Thank you so much for your insight and for sharing your experience. I know what you mean about conveying things which are unrealistic, this is my main concern with this. I suppose it comes down to how much freedom you get in your own class to discuss topics. Like starlight I am passionate about helping women being proprerly informed in a non judgemental way.
I have a very high degree so I am not too worried on the intellectual demands, it is more the logistic I am slighlty concerned about.