Inspired students

Choosing teaching as a career isn’t the easy choice – it’s hard work and requires extraordinary levels of commitment and creativity – but it’s also hugely satisfying and rewarding. The profession is usually a calling, something you know is right for you.

We talked to second-year Primary Education with QTS student, Becky Smith, to find out what inspired her.

Becky Smith - BA Primary Education with QTS

"It might sound silly, but I knew from a young age that I wanted to be a teacher. I was the bossy child telling my younger sister what to do! As I got older I took part in Sports Leaders teaching dance and my passion really grew from there.

"By the time I got to college I knew I’d need classroom experience to support an application for a teacher training course so I went to a school one day a week and found that Years Two and Three (typical that they should be at the end of Key Stage 1 and the beginning of Key Stage 2!) was the area I felt was right for me. In Year 11, during my GCSEs, I found a quote by an American teacher-turned-poet called Robert John Meehan which said “Teachers who love teaching teach learners to love learning.” This really resonated with me as that was exactly the kind of teacher I wanted to be.

"I’m currently on a nine-week placement and find my previous experience in drama and musical theatre has been great in helping my confidence to grow as being front of a class is a lot like being on stage all the time! Working with the University’s Schools and College Liaison team has also helped me as I now go out to schools and colleges to talk about my experience at university. I’ll be continuing to expand my experience working with older children over the summer too as I’m working on the National Citizenship Service Challenge scheme.

"I want to achieve through a child achieving and I love making a difference. I chose the primary phase because it’s this stage that sets children up for life; without laying the foundation a child can’t go on to fulfil their potential at secondary school. At primary school I really did not get on with my maths teachers and I don’t want to be like that – the teacher that everyone hates. I was lucky enough to have some fantastic teachers at secondary school who supported me through some difficult times and I wouldn’t be here without them. To be that person that makes that sort of difference is all I’ve ever wanted.

What Makes a Good Teacher? See what the schoolchildren think!