Secondary school teachers teach one or two national curriculum subjects to pupils aged 11-18.
Teachers support, observe and record the progress of their class. They also plan lessons in line with national objectives with the aim of ensuring a healthy culture of learning.
A secondary school teacher must also keep up to date with developments in their subject area, new resources, methods and national objectives. The role involves liaising and networking with other professionals, parents and carers, both informally and formally.
Typical work activities
Day-to-day activities may include:
- preparing and delivering lessons to a range of classes of different ages and abilities;
- marking work, giving appropriate feedback and maintaining records of pupils' progress and development;
- researching new topic areas, maintaining up-to-date subject knowledge, and devising and writing new curriculum materials;
- selecting and using a range of different learning resources and equipment, including podcasts and interactive whiteboards;
- undertaking pastoral duties, such as taking on the role of form tutor, and supporting pupils on an individual basis through academic or personal difficulties;
- preparing pupils for qualifications and external examinations;
- managing pupil behaviour in the classroom and on school premises, and applying appropriate and effective measures in cases of misbehaviour;
- supervising and supporting the work of teaching assistants, trainee teachers and newly qualified teachers (NQTs);
- participating in and organising extracurricular activities, such as outings, social activities and sporting events;
- participating in departmental meetings, parents' evenings and whole school training events;
- liaising with other professionals, such as learning mentors, careers advisers, educational psychologists and education welfare officers;
- undergoing regular observations and participating in regular in-service training (INSET) as part of continuing professional development (CPD).
Some teachers may be employed in middle schools, which take children aged 8 or 9 to 12 or 13. There are around 200 middle schools in England and Wales, and you would teach either the primary or secondary curriculum depending on the age of the children.
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