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    I don't know if this is the right area of the forum for this, but I'm currently in year 12 (as levels) at school and I've been considering going into teaching science at secondary level. We have to do an in school work placement as part of our timetable in sixth form and I've gone into year 7 and 11 science lessons all year for a lesson a week and it's confirmed that being in a classroom is where I belong. The teacher I do it with has me for bio and caught me trying to explain respiration to a year 7- at the correct level so she thinks I'm making the right decision as well.

    Anyway, I'm looking at doing a 4 year degree course (with a masters) and applying for a pgce while in my final year at uni with a view to going straight into it after my masters year. I know from a ucas fair I went to that a minimum 2 weeks work experience is needed to be considered for teacher training course and I was wondering whether it would be worth trying to start getting some experience of volunteering in schools from my first year in uni onwards or would I be better waiting until maybe the end of my third year (so the summer before I apply)? Also would it be worth trying to get a placement volunteering in a school near to my uni during the university term time or seeing if my old school would have me back during the summers or something (ie between finishing uni and the summer holidays) or a combination of the two??

    Sorry if this comes across a bit complicated, I just want to make sure that I'm not doing the wrong thing with regards to experience because teaching is my dream.

    Thanks
    Charlie


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    So you're 5-6 years away from applying for your PGCE?

    It's not too early to start gaining experience, ever - schools are constantly changing and observing different teachers will never be 'bad', but you wouldn't be able to use the experience you've gained now as your 2 week PGCE application experience.
    This would be good for your undergrad degree though so definitely mention it in your personal statement next year.

    Whilst you're still a student yourself, get it whilst you can! As soon as you hit 18/leave school, DBS checks become a pain and getting back into schools becomes harder.
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    It is never to early, but I would advise you to get a glimpse at work outside the education system as well. Most of the students, you will teach, will choose to work outside of the education system and I think you will improve as a teacher knowing, for what you are preparing them (in one or another way). And you will know for yourself as well, whether teaching is really the career, you want to choose. (I guess you are opting for Physics/Math or Science, as you speak of a four year Master course?)
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    I'm involved with girl guiding as a leader, so I'll have to have a DBS as soon as I turn 18 anyway - so surely this would be helpful with regards to getting experience. I will certainly be trying to get jobs over some of the holidays that I have from uni to give me a view of the outside world - I live quite close to gatwick airport so they always want summer staff.

    I'm looking at a natural sciences degree for 4 years... Would experience from like my first year of uni be too old to count or not? And would it be a good idea to see if my old school would have me back or not?? Sorry to ask so many questions, I just don't want to be caught out when I come to apply for a pgce.


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    (Original post by rayofsunshine98)
    I'm involved with girl guiding as a leader, so I'll have to have a DBS as soon as I turn 18 anyway - so surely this would be helpful with regards to getting experience. I will certainly be trying to get jobs over some of the holidays that I have from uni to give me a view of the outside world - I live quite close to gatwick airport so they always want summer staff.

    I'm looking at a natural sciences degree for 4 years... Would experience from like my first year of uni be too old to count or not? And would it be a good idea to see if my old school would have me back or not?? Sorry to ask so many questions, I just don't want to be caught out when I come to apply for a pgce.
    You don't need to get any more classroom experience until the last year of your degree.

    As your proposed degree is Natural Sciences and you seem set on teaching, I'm just checking you are aware of the 'Future Teaching Scholars' scheme.

    https://www.futureteachingscholars.com/
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    Thanks for this, and no I wasn't aware of that scheme, so I'll look into it


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