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    How does the primary teaching work? It's not like secondary school where you're given a set number of hours for a week, or is it?

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    As a primary teacher you do get PPA (planning, preparation and assessment) time; as an NQT you get a day's worth, as a 'fully qualified' teacher you have an afternoon.
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    (Original post by Mr Advice)
    How does the primary teaching work? It's not like secondary school where you're given a set number of hours for a week, or is it?

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    You teach 90% of the timetable, as StarBabyCat says, you get 10% PPA time, which usually works out as an afternoon. As an NQT you get another 10% for NQT time, although this can be used for NQT conferences, training and meeting your NQT mentor so it won't necessarily mean you will have a whole day off timetable per week as it doesn't have to be a weekly allowance. It depends on your school and how they work it! I know this because I was sent on endless NQT forums which were all basically the same thing!
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    (Original post by StarBabyCat)
    As a primary teacher you do get PPA (planning, preparation and assessment) time; as an NQT you get a day's worth, as a 'fully qualified' teacher you have an afternoon.
    I was talking specifically during the PGCE. How many hours of the day do you teach?

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    (Original post by Mr Advice)
    I was talking specifically during the PGCE. How many hours of the day do you teach?

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    It depends on your course.

    Generally speaking, a morning or afternoon is 10%, a full day is 20% so on earlier placements I had to start at 20% teaching (which might just be all the English lessons that week or something, so an hour a day ish) with 20% PPA, and the other 60% was for observing and helping out (almost like a TA). It moves up through the placement and ended on 60% teaching, 20% PPA and 20% observation etc.

    When it gets to your final placement, you start at a higher amount, so first week I was teaching 60%, then about 3 weeks later it upped to 70% and for the last few weeks we were teaching 80% cos that's what we'll be doing as NQTs next year.

    It varies from uni to uni though. I was on final placement with someone from a different uni and she only went up to 60% at the end, whereas I was on 80%.
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    (Original post by flamingoshoes)
    It depends on your course.

    Generally speaking, a morning or afternoon is 10%, a full day is 20% so on earlier placements I had to start at 20% teaching (which might just be all the English lessons that week or something, so an hour a day ish) with 20% PPA, and the other 60% was for observing and helping out (almost like a TA). It moves up through the placement and ended on 60% teaching, 20% PPA and 20% observation etc.

    When it gets to your final placement, you start at a higher amount, so first week I was teaching 60%, then about 3 weeks later it upped to 70% and for the last few weeks we were teaching 80% cos that's what we'll be doing as NQTs next year.

    It varies from uni to uni though. I was on final placement with someone from a different uni and she only went up to 60% at the end, whereas I was on 80%.
    So towards the end of your second placement you'll be the class teacher more or less - that should be interesting.

    Another thing I was gonna ask is how important is neat handwriting? I work with kids and regularly get told that they can't read my handwriting I try to improve it but it's permanent I think

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    (Original post by Mr Advice)
    So towards the end of your second placement you'll be the class teacher more or less - that should be interesting.

    Another thing I was gonna ask is how important is neat handwriting? I work with kids and regularly get told that they can't read my handwriting I try to improve it but it's permanent I think

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    I think it used to be more important.

    Obviously when you're marking their work they need to be able to read it, but now everyone uses Smartboards and stuff you can have most of your teaching typed up on that. Sometimes you can't avoid board writing but if you have a TA you can ask them to be your scribe or even better, each day choose a class scribe and get one of the kids to do it (this can only really work from Y4 ish upwards because of writing ability, but kids are DESPERATE to do jobs for teachers, even the most badly behaved ones)
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    (Original post by flamingoshoes)
    I think it used to be more important.

    Obviously when you're marking their work they need to be able to read it, but now everyone uses Smartboards and stuff you can have most of your teaching typed up on that. Sometimes you can't avoid board writing but if you have a TA you can ask them to be your scribe or even better, each day choose a class scribe and get one of the kids to do it (this can only really work from Y4 ish upwards because of writing ability, but kids are DESPERATE to do jobs for teachers, even the most badly behaved ones)
    Yeah I think my problem is when writing on paper with pen. I will definitely be trying to work on it and certainly slowing down my speed.

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    (Original post by Mr Advice)
    Yeah I think my problem is when writing on paper with pen. I will definitely be trying to work on it and certainly slowing down my speed.

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    I've got a similar problem! My handwriting looks great, but adults sometimes struggle with it so I am nervous that children may do so too :0/


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    (Original post by Imelda)
    I've got a similar problem! My handwriting looks great, but adults sometimes struggle with it so I am nervous that children may do so too :0/


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    Do you write fast? With me that's certainly the root of the problem. If I slow down, very hard to, it'll definitely become more readable.

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    That's part of it. I blame my postgrad. I had 4.5 hour long exams and speed was integral to getting the volume down! My writing style is the other part. It's quite "script" like. Maybe some handwriting practice is the answer.


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    (Original post by Imelda)
    That's part of it. I blame my postgrad. I had 4.5 hour long exams and speed was integral to getting the volume down! My writing style is the other part. It's quite "script" like. Maybe some handwriting practice is the answer.


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    Yeah, whatever is needed we don't wanna get told by kids or our advisers that our handwriting needs to be improved.

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    Does anybody know anyone who failed the PGCE or hasn't got a NQT job yet? What were the reasons?

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    Hi! I'm just wondering how everyone in long distance relationships found the PGCE, I'll be in London and my boyfriend will be about an hour away. I've been in one the past year, while I was in my third year and he was nearly 3 hours away and that worked fine! I'm just worried my weekend will be so packed I won't have time to see him. Any advice?

    Thanks!
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    (Original post by Mr Advice)
    Does anybody know anyone who failed the PGCE or hasn't got a NQT job yet? What were the reasons?

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    I don't have an NQT job yet.

    I'm not certain of the reasons but I think it's mainly a combination of a limited search area (as I want to live in Norwich and don't drive, so haven't been able to apply anywhere the buses or trains don't go) and simply not enough jobs to go around.

    I had outstanding ratings from my placements. I think perhaps my first personal statement (I had a different one for each application but in a similar style) was not personal enough... I didn't big myself up enough! That was used at 3 schools.

    I then got an interview immediately at a 4th after changing my PS but unfortunately didn't get to the interview bit as I wasn't shortlisted after my teaching session. My issue there was pitch - this was something I found hard as I had to pitch to a completely unknown group of children.

    I am about to apply for a 5th (going to visit to check I like it tomorrow).

    xxx
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    I don't know anyone who's failed or not got a job.
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    (Original post by StarBabyCat)
    I don't know anyone who's failed or not got a job.
    That's encouraging. I knew it was pretty easy to pass the course but I'm also hearing a lot of people getting jobs, some starting in July.

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    (Original post by Mr Advice)
    Does anybody know anyone who failed the PGCE or hasn't got a NQT job yet? What were the reasons?

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    No one on my course failed (although a couple should have, they really did not deserve to pass and their attitude is appalling...). Plenty on my course, however, do not have a job. Job prospects will depend a lot on your location, whether you will move for a job and which subject/age phase you want to teach. I was on a primary PGCE in a ridiculously competitive area.

    (Original post by Whatsaboutit)
    Hi! I'm just wondering how everyone in long distance relationships found the PGCE, I'll be in London and my boyfriend will be about an hour away. I've been in one the past year, while I was in my third year and he was nearly 3 hours away and that worked fine! I'm just worried my weekend will be so packed I won't have time to see him. Any advice?

    Thanks!
    My boyfriend and I lived about 50 minutes away this year. I saw him almost every weekend for an evening and day, sometimes the full weekend and sometime during the holidays. It's a case of really managing your workload and having really good time management and organisational skills. Occasionally we would see one another once a fortnight, but that was very rare and also dependent on his workload (4th year at Uni). We've done really well though and haven't found it too difficult.
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    I'd say a good 15-20 either dropped out or have had to resit placements on my PGCE. Don't know about failing exactly, because they give you enough chances to pass, but a lot of people have had to delay finishing the PGCE for at least 6 months.
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    (Original post by Mr Advice)
    That's encouraging. I knew it was pretty easy to pass the course but I'm also hearing a lot of people getting jobs, some starting in July.

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    I would debate that it is 'pretty easy' to pass the course. I know a handful of people who have dropped out for whatever reason and many others who found it very difficult. I wouldn't ever say a PGCE is easy, regardless of the age-phase or subject. Although saying that, I know plenty of people who passed who just weren't good enough, but then they haven't gained employment so it says it all. Some universities are more concerned about their retention/pass rates than their quality of teachers.

    For getting a job, It all depends on the area you live in, how far you are willing to open your search and a little luck thrown in! I am based in an area with a large number of highly rated teacher training providers so competition is quite fierce, with 100+ people applying for each teaching post. From my particular cohort (which was based in another area.) there weren't many people with jobs for a September start but then most people managed to get jobs for January. I think now there is only a small percentage who haven't gained employment but as stated above, they weren't very good any way or had very poor attitudes and scraped passing.

    Just put the hours in, work smart and you will do well!
 
 
 
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