Whether you’re a career changer, thinking about starting a BEd or you’re planning on taking the PGCE route you’ll find lots of advice here. Charlie Taylor will answer new topics containing "Dear Charlie" in the subject.
I'm kind of worrying I won't fit the bill & it will be too difficult.
I have enjoyed helping out in the classroom etc but I'm worried it will be too much for me all in all.
My friend has just dropped out of her NQT year despite already passing the PGCE year. She just couldn't stand the pressure and now says she is much happier.
I'm so torn, I've been offered a place for next year pending my results in exam but I'm still thinking is it all worth it at all?
Anyone else in similar situation?
I think that the nerves part of this post will be experienced by most people who are starting their PGCEs next year. I know Im a little worried about similar things, what happens if the students dont respond to me? What happens if Im no good at it? But all in all, the excited of starting the course is what is keeping me positive about the whole thing, I cant wait to get started at do the thing Ive aimed to do!
I think you should accept that you are going to be nervous, and indeed you wont be good at it straight away, but dont worry too much! You can only give it a shot. Congratulations on getting a place by the way! It really is an achievement :)
I didn't have any second thoughts of starting until I saw the student teacher forums with so many negative situations people are in and some people posting blogs online saying how bad teaching is. It shattered my dreams pretty much but I'm trying not to let them get in the way anymore.
What you have to consider is just because it hasn't suited your friend doesn't mean it won't suit you. Who knows, you may enjoy it?
Obviously you won't know what it's like until you start the course, and I know it's an expensive 'trial', but you might regret it if you drop out without giving it a go.
What I started to do was evaluate my skills and spent more time in the classroom. I'm a VERY VERY VERY determined girl and I don't drop to failure. I don't deal with stress and pressure very well, but I'm hoping the PGCE will help me improve it (said that in the interview!), however I like being kept on my toes. I get bored very easily and in teaching your working days are definitely different. If you're thinking whether it's worth it all - I think you should start evaluating the pressures of PGCE with your own abilities, and also try and spend more time in the classroom possibly to see if it's really what you want to do.
It might just be cold feet - but you have from now to september to consider your options :)
I too have felt nervous and had second thoughts from time to time about doing my PGCE since I was offered a place back at the end of January. Most of these worries and concerns have been fuelled by the horror stories I've read on forums such as these.
I wanted to reply to you as I remembered the enthusiasm you wrote with when you were going for interview and when you were offered your place. You were really enthusiastic and delighted - don't forget how you felt then. It would be a shame to let other people's experiences scare you away from fulfilling a dream.
Try not to read too much on the forums. 10-15 years ago there would have
been no online venting and it is true, people do tend to post things of
a more negative rather than positive nature. Speak to real people -
students and teachers who have survived PGCE, NQT and whatever else has
been thrown at them. I know your friend has had a bad experience but
there are 100s of would-be teachers completing their PGCEs every year
who go onto complete their NQT year and have a great career. If it was
really that bad then there would be a severe teacher shortage.
In my opinion, I think the wait from finding out that you've got a place until starting eight or even nine months later doesn't help. I've also not heard anything from my ITT provider since receiving my place confirmation. When you're going to uni to do an undergraduate degree, you generally get your results and then have a month to get ready, pack your bags and head off. There's not really any time to worry about what the experience will be like and any nerves are usually forgotten through pure excitement and anticipation. I know I often feel like I'm in limbo waiting for it to be September and start the course. I keep reminding myself that I need to get on with life and the here and now and not stress too much about things that haven't happened yet. For me, this is much easier said than done but I'm trying.
All I can say is try not to worry too much and enjoy the summer so that you start feeling relaxed. Do a little bit of work to help you prepare (I want to really sort my maths skills out as I know the QTS test has the potential to stress me out.) and get all the stationery and do all the other bits and bobs together so that you feel your confidently starting out (shopping will be the nice part, I'm sure!).
I do hope these second thoughts go away and you do start your course in September. Try to remember all the positive reasons why you wanted to get into teaching - write a list where it helps and keep looking at it throughout the PGCE to remind yourself why you want to do this and what will make you a great teacher.
I'm sure you're going to be fabulous! Good luck. x
I think it's natural to worry in this way. My boyfriend (who is a
teacher) constantly reminds me that the PGCE is designed to take someone
with subject knowledge and equip them with the skills to teach their
subject. They aren't expecting us to go in knowing what we are doing or
there'd be no point in the course. They also understand that it can be
intimidating going into a classroom, and standing alone in front of
teenagers/controlling a class of smaller ones for the first time which
is why we get phased in. Many people have said to me that they would be
more worried if I *wasnt* nervous because that might mean that I was
over-confident, or wearing rose-tinted glasses, or that I hadn't
considered things fully.
In terms of negative things on forum,
while the way they are presented is sometimes heavy-handed, we just have
to remember that everybody's experience, to some degree, is unique. A
large influence on how things turn out is the way we ourselves approach
and interpret things. There are lots of people on this forum (especially
Djaye) who have spent time encouraging others and sharing their own
enthusiasm, and I have found that infectious, but I also recognise that
their decisions have obviously been carefully considered, and that they
are not going into this career lightly, with blinkers on. Every teacher I
know (quite a few, partly because I did an English degree!) has
expressed that they started out pretty terrified by the thought of
dealing with confrontation in the classroom, but now state confidently
that, that in itself is not a reason not to go into teaching because you
learn how to deal with these sorts of situations, ideally in a way
which means that it does not escalate to that point.
rambling, and I know that I'm coming at this from a point of naivety
having only done cover supervision, but I just think the best we can do
is go in with a positive frame of mind and give it our best.
PS. I always find this extract from Jeanette Winterson useful at times like this!:
I've been having serious wobbles and second thoughts after reading all the problems, negativity, stress, complaints and you name it on this forum.
That said, I have to keep reminding myself of the following:
-This course is less than a year, what 8 months? Hopefully all of us will live long and propserous lives, so 1 year out of 80, is a really short time, so if it does all go tits up/ is hell on earth/worst year of my life, then that's all it is, 8 months.
- If I do the course and it turns out teaching is not for me, or I am not vey good at it, and don't decide to persue it as a career, then what is going to happen?Nothing, life goes on, the world doesn't end, and hell doesn't freeze over. I'd rather say I tried and failed/didn't wok out, then look back and regret never having tried at all and be forever wondering, 'What if...' could I have done it? Would I have enjoyed it.
-opinions on forums are polarising - there is no middle road. Everyone posting saying that they don't have time to do X, Y, Z, still have time to spend 5 minutes posting on the forum!
- I did a gradscheme for 3 years at one of the 'Big Four' - 60 hour weeks were par for the course. Hopefully it means I have the stamina and energy reserves in me somewhere. we'll see though.
Hi Jen, I remember talking to you a while back on these forums about teacher training. I have also gained a place on the teacher training and start this week (part time flexible route). I am nervous and worried about the course but I contine to remind myself of why I have chosen this career path.
It is natural to feel nervous, we have a lot to learn from the course and it is a big change for us. What subject are you training in? I'm more worried about the prospects (or lack of) once i'm qualified.
Keep your chin up and remember why you chose a career in teaching!
I agree that the negative comments do make you think for a second about whether you can handle it, especially the stories about bullying mentors. However, never for one minute have I thought, 'teaching isn't for me' or 'wow that's changed my mind.' You never know how YOU'LL do until YOU do it. I wouldn't give up on something before I've even started it. Especially if you have wanted it for so long.
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