Category Archives: 1.2 Integrity

Hello! Bonjour! Hola! Guten tag!

Languages. We all have one but should we just stop at that?

I believe that as teachers, we would be depriving our pupils if we did not incorporate other languages of the world into our classroom. It is ever more apparent that these days huge numbers of people do not just live in the country of their birth for their entire life. So are we really equipping the children with the basic fundamentals for life if we do not grant foreign languages with a high level of importance within the classroom?

I was fortunate enough to spend time and live with Spanish students for three weeks in Edinburgh whilst they visited Scotland. I was there to teach and improve their English. In the morning they went to language school and then spent the afternoons and evenings with us- sight seeing, playing games in the park and going shopping. Whilst all the time speaking in English.  Many a time we faced difficulties where nor one or the other could understand what the other was trying to say. Which as you could imagine could be extremely frustrating! However we always got there in the end!

The thing that made this extremely difficult was the fact that I cannot speak Spanish. I could sing you the odd Spanish song from past experiences of strutting my stuff on the dance floor to them, but no where near what was needed to have a conversation! If I had been able to speak their language fluently it would have been all to easy for us to just start communicating in Spanish when they got tired of English, completely defeating the main purpose of their visit!

Speaking a second language for a long period of time can be exhausting and witnessing that first hand of the students I was with made me truly respect and appreciate what they were doing.  Many of these young people spoke more than just the two languages. When I asked why,  they explained that by having a knowledge of other languages it opens up job opportunities all round the world for them. It would enable them to travel the world to see and experience all the different cultures we have. They believe that it’s only fair that if you travel to somewhere new, you as the guest, should make the effort to know at least some of the native language.

I love to travel. Especially as I lived in Germany when I was younger I love exploring new places!  Personally, I believe it’s really important for children to have a passion and desire to want to know about the world they live in and the people living in it. Many families cannot afford to take their children abroad so as a teacher it would be my wish to bring those countries into the classroom. We don’t necessarily need an aeroplane or boat to raise awareness of the outside world to children. We just need creativeness, imagination and passion. I want to ensure that any future pupil of mine leaves my classroom having a good idea of what living in another culture would be like and for them to have the desire to maybe visit that country in the future. I want them to know phrases of languages which could then be built on as they get older and used all around the world!

This country is a great place to live but when there is so much more greatness to see, let’s not shy our children away from that. Encourage exploring. It’s a bit like trial and error- you have to try things to see if you like them. You have to try new things to learn and as teachers we are there to facilitate that learning.

Get your backpacks on, we’re going on a round the world trip..classroom style!


After a lovely day at Portobello beach in Edinburgh with my lovely Spanish and English speaking friends!



“A primary teacher? Seriously Emily? You could do so much more than that..”

Today I was asked by an old friend what it was I was studying. After I replied, explaining I was studying to become a primary teacher the response I got was, for me, an extremely sad one.

“A primary teacher? Seriously Emily? That’s not exactly difficult is it? Baby sitting kids all day and teaching them the alphabet isn’t a proper job! You could do much more than that! Teacher training is harder than the actual job itself!”

I can’t quite put into words how shocked and upset this made me. I couldn’t think of anything to say in return. Is this really what people think of primary teachers? I have dedicated so much time in order for me to be able to obtain the training needed to become a teacher- it’s all I have ever wanted to do. So for somebody to think that I was wasting my time on a career they didn’t deem worthy of being given the time of day hurt a lot. I don’t know about you but I would never talk down to someone like this or discard their chosen career. Especially one that would be affecting the future generations of children.

I realise many people share that same belief as the individual I bumped into today. Surprisingly I actually feel sorry for them as maybe primary school for them was not an enjoyable or memorable experience. Where would the world be without primary teachers? Children need that education experience in order to be equipped with the tools they need to develop into successful, well-rounded adults. Not every parent would have the time to spend 5/6 hours a day educating their children. Despite feeling rather deflated by those comments I’ve turned that into determination. I am more determined than ever to try and inform as many people as possible as to how much work, dedication and passion teachers put in within and outside the classroom and how much they care about the job and people they are helping. I believe that the lecturers , tutors and fellow students I have surrounding me are so passionate about the profession they are part of that I know a positivity towards primary education is extremely strong. I have chosen to turn this negative into a positive and I encourage anyone who experiences a similar situation to do the same.

I am a student teacher and proud to say it.

An Enquiring Practitioner

An enquiring practitioner carries out research in order to enhance their breadth of knowledge. The practitioner can then share this information with colleagues. To be an effective practitioner, working together with other people is vital. However, working with others doesn’t come challenge free. There may be communication difficulties which can be rather problematic when trying to work collaboratively and cooperatively as it could cause misunderstandings and interpretations that may lead to unpleasant relationships within the group. Disagreement is a good thing as it shows everyone has formed their own idea in their head. However, by not accepting someone’s opinion and not showing that you appreciate that everyone is entitled to their own opinion, conflicts can then arise. This kind of conflict between team members hampers the amount of work completed and lowers the group moral. In addition, certain members of the group could start to feel very isolated and become separated from the rest which may deter them greatly from taking part in group activities in the future.

On the other hand, there are many benefits that come from working in a group. Not only does group work provide the opportunity for and individual to gain confidence, it gives them a chance to get their voice heard and gain some kind of reassurance. Moreover, it also creates opportunities to share and develop ideas, allowing team members a chance to gain knowledge from their peers. Working as part of a team can also improve efficiency in the successful process and completion of group tasks. Moreover, the workload can be shared and any problems discussed, thereby reducing the stress and strain put on one person. The calmer the process of completing the task can be, the higher the quality of the finished product.

As a student teacher I think it is extremely important to be an enquiring practitioner. It allows student teachers to work with colleagues to develop and plan lessons in an effective manner. Furthermore, being part of group discussions also allows areas of improvement to be highlighted. This is extremely important for a student teacher so that they can take on board the suggested improvements in order for them to develop into the best teachers they can be. It is all about recognising areas of weaknesses and learning how to improve them. Working with colleagues in the school environment can also give you the opportunity to observe how other teachers conduct their lessons and perhaps adapt some of their techniques and incorporate them into your own lessons. Being able to research issues and share your findings is valuable as it demonstrates the ability to learn and share new ideas and how to reinforce your findings. I believe that being an enquiring practitioner can develop our teaching skills and professional attributes which are two key areas essential in order to provide a high quality education.

Anyone Can Be A Professional

I chose to watch One Born Every Minute. It was such a great way to demonstrate professionalism working at its very best.  The programme has opened my eyes to the core of what a professional is.  Yes, it’s about conducting your work in a suitable way and having correct behaviour , impressive presentation and possess the knowledge needed to carry out the job,  but I now believe that it is so much more than that. Professionalism is about the passion and love you have for what you’re doing. Waking up every morning looking forward to the work you will be carrying out and the impact it will have on others. I’ve learned that professionals don’t just do their job for themselves- they do it for others. A professional cares about the welfare of the people they are helping- it’s all about looking at the wider world and being prepared to go that extra mile for someone you don’t even know.  Selfless acts of kindness and a commitment and dedication to others is what professionalism is to me. You are loyal to those you are helping. The midwives demonstrated all of these skills and more.

I believe that anyone has the ability to become a professional. We need to step away from the idea that professionalism is all about academic excellence. Just because a person achieves top marks in exams does not mean they will necessarily be more effective in a profession than someone who doesn’t. As we set off on our route to becoming teachers it’s vital that we understand that nobody should be bound to society’s preconceived stereotypes.

Anyone can be a professional. Anyone can have that love, passion and dedication required, but we must never confine anyone so that they cannot utilise these just because that‘s the way generations have before. We want future generations to live to their full potential no matter what their situation and to do that mindsets have to change.