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Any secondary teachers around? Need advice (for me).

(20 Posts)
OneSteakBake Sat 12-Dec-15 09:03:42

Changing names not to out myself.

I'm thinking of going into teaching but I'm not quite sure which subject would match my background better.

I studied abroad, therefore have no GCSEs or A Levels, but my main subjects for what was equivalent to A Levels were Advanced Maths and Physics.

I have 3 university degrees, one in Graphic Design, one in Web Design and another in Art History. But I have also a certificate in Interior Design. I worked extensively as a senior designer and taught at undergraduate level. I have got quite a bit of experience in interior design acquired through my studies, property development and working in home stagging.

Having said that, I moved into HE administration roles after the birth of my child, so I have not been involved in academia, design or teaching for 15 years.

I'm willing to train as a secondary school teacher but not quite sure which subject to choose, any suggestions?

Design and History are my passions, but it seems that Design and Technology include quite a bit of cooking and sewing and neither of them are in my list of strengths!

noblegiraffe Sat 12-Dec-15 10:51:39

Why don't you phone your local training provider and ask what they suggest? It might be easier to get onto a D&T course, that's the subject that most dramatically failed to meet its recruitment targets this year, and you'll get a £12,000/£9000 (depending on degree classification) bursary if you do a PGCE. But D&T is not an Ebacc subject and is going to be way down the list of priorities for schools. While you might end up teaching product design or similar, there won't be enough for a full timetable so you'll definitely have to fill in with other stuff that you're not as comfortable with.

History is an Ebacc subject and the Ebacc will now be compulsory (target 90% of students will take a humanity GCSE), so higher status, but attracts a lower bursary (£9000/£4000).

You might decide to do on the job training (schools direct) rather than a PGCE which is a paid training year.

What do you know about teaching secondary? A lot of teachers are leaving because the workload is ridiculous. Have you any secondary experience? Get into some schools and talk to teachers first.

hesterton Sat 12-Dec-15 10:55:57

Once you have qualified they may well give you teaching in other areas in which you have degree qualifications - it sounds as if you would be a wonderfully versatile appointment. Maths of course is a shortage subject. And in a large school, you could focus on the technologies you specialise in rather than the ones you are less interested in once you have qualified.

OneSteakBake Sat 12-Dec-15 11:17:16

Thank you for the very informative post. smile

I have 5 years teaching experience which I thoroughly enjoyed,so it is not that I'm taking on this career change blindfolded. I know that for every hour you teach you need to put quite a few extra ones in preparation, reviewing work and administrative duties. So I really want to take into something I enjoy teaching rather than going for the higher bursary.

My strengths are design, art history, product design, arts, coding and programming, IT, Spanish and maths, could extend to Physics if I tried but I really don't think my heart is there.

I am interested in job training (I already have 3 postgraduate degrees so I really don't see the point of getting yet anither one), I have talked to several Get into Teaching advisers but I would like to hear about people who are already working in education in the hope of narrowing the options.

Can you teach a combination of technical and humanities subjects?

OneSteakBake Sat 12-Dec-15 11:18:55

Hesterton, Thanks I guess that answers the question (makes note to add "bigger school" to the list of things I am looking for)

BoneyBackJefferson Sat 12-Dec-15 11:28:06

Have you considered computer sciences.

Depending on the size of the school, you would have a full timetable in Ks3 Technology possibly not in Ks4, looking at your list of attributes you would pick up classes in them without to much of an issue.

Orangeanddemons Sat 12-Dec-15 11:31:17

I teach Dt, you look like you could teach that+ computer studies+ art. I have a full timetable of my Dt area, and all the kids love doing it.

noblegiraffe Sat 12-Dec-15 11:33:34

What you teach will be dictated by the needs of the school timetable, you are unlikely to see any D&T and humanities posts advertised. But many teachers teach bits outside their specialism.

If you can do programming, have you considered computer science? That's a major shortage subject with the scrapping of ICT and the introduction of computer science.

Teaching at an undergraduate level will be very different to teaching secondary, I imagine. Behaviour management can create a lot of stress, the workload isn't just planning and marking, it can also be quite emotional. You will also be teaching students with learning difficulties and behavioural problems that you won't have encountered at university.

OneSteakBake Sat 12-Dec-15 16:49:20

Giraffe, you would be surprised at the wide variety of problems students can face at university level, it is not as if they become responsible well grounded individuals at the chime of their 18th birthday. They still need to deal with their disabilities if they have them, mental health problems and other welfare issues that may have dragged on for a while. Main difference is that as they are now adults you cannot force measures to safeguard them and that coukd be as equally frustrating as heartbreaking.

Teaching at university level is not easier, just different, you still need to get your students' respect and manage their behaviour and expectations well, if you don't want a little nasty revolution started. Each age has its own different set of problems.

With regards to different learning abilities, well there is a lot I need to learn, but having spent the last 15 years in Aspergers central and trying to keep my dyslexic child up to scratch with his studies (and serious attention problems) may be a good base on which to develop further expertise.

With regards to computer science, I completed the first 2 years of a BSc in electronics in the USA before moving to study a BA in graphic design, so... Although I took a good number of classes in programming and got good grades on them, my degree is not in CS, which I thought would make me ineligible to apply to train to be a CS teacher, is that correct?

OneSteakBake Sat 12-Dec-15 16:53:41

OrangeandDemons, may I please ask you whether is it possible to find a D&T national programme syllabus somewhere online? At this time everything that I know about the subject is based on whatever my KS3 child is upto in school.
Thank you :-)

OneSteakBake Sat 12-Dec-15 16:55:37

By the way, did any of you took the School Direct route? If so, how did you find the experience? If you could choose this roite again, would you?

rollonthesummer Sat 12-Dec-15 16:56:08

Are your degrees U.K. Ones?

OneSteakBake Sat 12-Dec-15 18:30:44

One is from US, one was awarded jointly by a consortium of European Universities, the next is from a UK Rusell Group University and I have also another one in Economics, which is irrelevant as I am no longer interested in the subject.

I have to say, however, that I have found out that having such a varied backgound is not an asset when it comes to applications...

BoneyBackJefferson Sat 12-Dec-15 21:26:19

2014 Curriculum here

Ks4 is changing as we speak

Scarydinosaurs Sat 12-Dec-15 21:36:13

Although you might think you know, you really have no idea until you get into a secondary school.

I would get two weeks work experience arranged in a local secondary comprehensive, go to a history, computer science and DT department and see what you think.

I can see what you mean about a varied background not always being a benefit. If I was shortlisting, I think I'd want to ask why you haven't got a clear specialisim. It suggests you're unfocused and lack dedication/staying power. All could be completely unfair, but you need to be ready to answer those sorts of questions. I teach outside my degree area, and so I understand having to justify past choices.

Good luck!

BoneyBackJefferson Sat 12-Dec-15 21:37:55

"but it seems that Design and Technology include quite a bit of cooking and sewing"

Why do you think this?

mummytime Sun 13-Dec-15 07:00:38

In my DCs school DR teachers tend to offer 2 of the DT subjects, so resistant materials and graphics.

I have taught at University level, and was training as a secondary teacher. They are nothing alike. The admin is much much more than a bit of lesson preparation.

You need to get some experience inside schools. This is usually a requirement to be considered for any kind of training.

Scarydinosaurs Sun 13-Dec-15 08:31:19

At schools I've worked in the tech teachers offer all technologies at KS3 and then teach their specialism at KS4 and 5.

OneSteakBake Sun 13-Dec-15 09:02:42

Dinosaur,
No, I don't have any idea, but to be honest, nobody does until you try it.

However, I don't have a rose tinted spectacled idea of it either, my mother was a secondary school teacher for the last 40 years, so after seeing her highs and lows, this is a decision I am not taking lightly.

With regards to the variety in my background, it is not lack of focus, far from it, but I really wish that people were more open and asked questions in interviews, rather than assuming the person in front of them is lying or not focused, simply put, it is easier to assume that than recognise that the person in front of you may take their interests very seriously and work in more than two fields at a time.

OneSteakBake Sun 13-Dec-15 09:06:38

Boney, thank you very much for the link. That is very useful, I will have a good look at it.

With regards to the cooking and sewing, that's what DS has been doing in DT over the last 2years, hence tge muscinception but than you ever so much for correcting me :-)

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