After graduating with a degree in English Language and Linguistics, Saadiya enrolled on a PGCE in Primary Education with QTS (Qualified Teacher Status) at Edge Hill University. Find out how her course is preparing her for a career in the classroom
Why did you choose this PGCE and Edge Hill University?
I've always wanted to be a teacher; my mum has worked in schools since I was small and I had a great experience at my own primary school. Teaching is so much more than just a profession. It allows you to inspire young minds, to change the world for the better.
Why Edge Hill University? I have friends who graduated from here and really enjoyed it. I also heard that their teaching courses are excellent. Also, when I arrived, I was struck by how scenic it is here. I think that it's important to have open space to relax in, to be outside among nature.
What are you most enjoying about your course?
It has all been great, so informative and engaging. You really benefit from tutors who can pass on years' of classroom experience and make learning fun. The other day in our science session we modelled a digestive system using beans, toast and some tights to represent the large intestine. I love exploring new, creative ways to teach and this was one of them.
Using education to help avoid prejudice is something I am passionate about, so for my research specialism I'm looking at religious education, specifically teaching controversial issues. I have a keen interested in RE as a subject anyway but the RE tutor here is very inspiring. She teaches RE in a way I've not seen before and I want to do the same to explore issues like 9/11, Islamophobia and the Holocaust. Using a cross-curricular approach in RE, history and drama is a proven effective method. Allowing children to explore issues in a creative way gives them the opportunity to ask questions on subjects they are exposed to through the media in a safe space.
Also, in the first week we had lectures about coping with workloads and looking after our mental and physical health. The PGCE is quite intense and when you enter the teaching profession you need to ensure you’re looking after yourself as well as the children, so these sessions are vital. Support from other students and tutors is also an important part of that. We're all passionate about the same thing and it's great being in a supportive environment.
Have you been on a teaching placement yet?
I'm just starting my first placement at a really good primary school. The children are lovely, the headteacher and staff have been so inviting and friendly, and I've been attached to a mentor who will be observing my lessons. I'm really looking forward to getting into the classroom.
What are your plans after graduation?
I want to be a primary school teacher, really creative in the way I teach, and hopefully have the potential to transform lives. I recently found out that my former primary school teacher lectures on this course and was one of those teachers everyone remembers because they were amazing. She is one of the reasons I want to become a teacher and I hope to someday inspire children in the same way.
What advice would you give to others considering this PGCE programme?
Go for it. This course is intense and so you need to be organised, disciplined and mentally ready for the jump to postgraduate study. Also, come with an open mind and learn from other people. This is your year to learn, to make mistakes and to figure out what sort of teacher you want to be. Give it your all and qualify with the ability to give your best to the kids. And don't forget to have fun.
Find out more
- Read about what a PGCE involves.
- Take a look at Edge Hill University's PGCE Primary Education with QTS.