Teaching is becoming a more appealing career every year. There’s no position that rewards the respect and perks as a teacher does. Long holidays, amazing pension plans and the feeling of moulding the future generations is drawing more and more young people to teaching.
But becoming a teacher isn’t as simple as rolling up to a school and sticking a CV into the reception. It takes time, effort and, above all things, an honest belief that you want to teach. Here are five top tips to kickstart your career as a teacher.
1. Know what training scheme you want
Speaking to the Guardian, Head-Teacher Nick Dennis said: “PGCEs can be fantastic as you gain the time to blend working in a school with subject knowledge and studying the craft of teaching. While Teach First is popular if you want to get stuck in right away, training in schools is also very useful.”
Knowing which route you want to go down depends on what kind of teacher you want to be and what suits your learning style.
2. Get your finances sorted
Depending on what subject you want to specialise in, you may be eligible to some financial aid. Especially if you’re teaching science or maths, that are loads of great bursaries to take advantage of. Alternatively, you can work on your PGCE part-time and get another job to keep yourself afloat.
3. A degree isn’t necessary but recommended
Most teaching schemes will require some sort of bachelor’s degree in the subject you plan to teach. That shouldn’t really be a surprise. However, there are specialist teacher courses you can do that bundle your teaching qualification into it. They take about two to three years to complete but probably won’t give you the plush starting salary you get with a PGCE.
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4. Take any work experience you can
As with most jobs, work experience is always advantageous. What’s great about teaching is that there are always schools that are in need of teaching assistants. You can read all the books you want but potential employers value hands-on experience above everything.
5. Your CV is more crucial than you know
Because of the surge in interested from people wanting to become teachers, your CV can be the tool to set you apart from the rest. Since the PGCE is a stand-alone qualification that most applicants will have, your employment history and ethos counts ten-fold. Emphasise your capabilities and past experience as well as your key skills – schools want teachers who are ready to roll from day one.