Where have I been and why am I here?
I started work at Milngavie Nursery Class (as it was), back in 2001. My teaching experience up till then had been in Primaries 3, 6 and 7 in Barmulloch Primary, Laurel Park School and Summerhill Primary. I had a little nursery experience from long term supply work in Meadowburn Nursery Class and Baljaffray Nursery Class and I knew from this experience that Nursery was definitely the stage for me.
I love the honesty of children aged 3, 4 and 5. You know when you have put on weight, have spots or develop wrinkles- the natural curiosity of the age group and the complete lack of inhibition leave you in absolutely no doubt whatsoever. I love the curiosity and lack of cynicism nursery children have. They are just developing their ideas and opinions on the world, and learning is exciting! Every day in nursery is different as you never know what is next in the minds of our children – and fortunately for us, in nursery education, we are encouraged to take the learning from the children’s questions and build the curriculum around what interests them. We are also lucky enough to have our children for 2 years- in this time we see our wee ones develop their speech, independence, ideas and self confidence. It is a real privilege to watch them grow and mature, and get to know families, as well as children along the way.
Another aspect of nursery teaching is being part of an experienced staff team. I have been lucky enough to work with amazing colleagues – we have an incredibly low turn over of staff here- all the original staff from the day the place opened are still here (except the teacher I replaced!) and we have shared the highs and lows of parenting over the years (all of us, bar our two newest and most glamourous recruits, have 2 children each!) We all have very different personalities and different talents and this makes for a nursery team with a very diverse range. My colleagues have a lot to put up with in me – I am notoriously scatty and have a real talent for losing things! On the upside, I usually have a sense of humour and I like the spontaneous nature of events like fish funerals, finding frogs (but not touching them!), dancing to crazy music, or camp fires with marshmallows, which can all be part of a day in our nursery.
What do I do?
My official role in our nursery is Curriculum Leader – this involves ensuring we offer a balanced curriculum, within the framework of the Early Stage of the Scottish Curriculum for Excellence (3-18). The Early Level of the Curriculum covers 3 years -Nursery to the end of Primary 1. Part of my job is ensuring a smooth transition for our children between nursery and Primary1 and I am involved in the induction visits to Milngavie Primary, and also talking to visiting P1 teachers from all the schools our children are going to. I work with Milngavie’s Primary 1 teachers on an Active Learning Project where our pre-school children have the chance to take part in outdoor learning activities with Primary 1 children.
I am also responsible for supporting children with additional needs within our nursery. Children may need additional support for a variety of reasons- these can include support for development of speech (in conjunction with our speech therapy colleagues), of social interaction, of emotional development, or short term support for children for example, experiencing the break up of parental relationships, bereavement, a new baby or moving house. Children may also need extra support to realise their full potential, if they have a particular talent or interest. I am always available for discussion with parents about the extra support we can offer their child within our nursery setting – never hesitate to ask if you feel this might be useful. I work with your child’s key worker in identifying and addressing children’s needs and we are always able to arrange a time to have a chat with you.
My formal training is :
An MA in History from University of Glasgow
A Post Graduate Certificate in Primary Education from Strathclyde University
A Post Graduate Certificate in Early Education from Strathclyde University
An Accreditation as a Triple P (Positive Parenting Programme) Practitioner from University of Queensland
My informal training:
Madeleine – my daughter – born 1986
Cameron – my son- born 1989
As different as chalk and cheese, and always a challenge- even now!! (often in a good way!)
My interests: Gardening, wine, researching my family, getting to know Leadhills- where I have a teeny, weeny cottage, listening to out of fashion music, watching Game of Thrones and Retro humour: Monty Python, Spike Milligan, Ivor Cutler, Chic Murray. Favourite films: The Big Lebowski, Blazing Saddles, Star Wars and anything in black and white that pre-dates 1950.
Most exciting development of my life so far: I am going to be a granny for the first time in September 2016- have a feeling life will never be the same!!!!
Most irritating habit: Saying, “I could put that in the blog!”- I’ve become a blogoholic!!!!
Best job: Teacher at Milngavie Nursery!!!!