Primary Education Personal Statement
I find it bitterly ironic that the likes of Jean Piaget and Lev Vygotsky (both of whom were male psychologists) contributed many ideas that revolutionised childcare, yet there is a shortage of males working in this particular field - this is one of many reasons why I would like to pursue a career in primary education.
I gained work experience in the primary school I attended as a child, and found it remarkable that one professional could simultaneously progress the learning of many pupils, thus my inspiration to do the same.
Shadowing my former year 4 teacher, I was able to understand the precise pedagogy that was in place to educate children through the National Curriculum, which supports my passion for many academic subjects. I was also given an insight to the role a primary teacher has, from planning lessons to communicating with parents, which I admire greatly because the best education does not solely occur in the classroom.
My voluntary work as a Chaperone during the Easter holidays of 2014 familiarises with this perspective, where I assisted children travelling to community-based trips. I realised how much children learn in a different environment, where they liaise with the outside world. Working as a team of professionals was also a new skill, and an essential one for me to communicate appropriately with colleagues.
Discovering my ever-growing desire to teach children, I felt it was best to learn how children of a younger age develop first, hence my student placements at day nurseries.
Engaging with young children through play taught me that practice and provision is specific to an age range, whilst supporting their needs and interests gave me the understanding that children need to be happy and comfortable in order to develop. Both aspects are essential to the role of a primary teacher, which is why I feel my experiences have shaped me to study this area.
I also attend a Forest school with my placement, introducing children to a rather more natural environment. I collaborate with practitioners, guiding children through nature as part of exploration, which helps build my leadership skills.
From dissecting Shakespeare's plays to indulging the words of John Green, some of my spare time occupies books and poetry, as I have a fondness for the intricacy of words and the origins from which they derive. Reading between the lines of both prose and verse allows me to deduce the meaning behind language and the way in which it is written.
I wish to make use of my analytical skills, by instilling the purpose behind understanding symbolic meanings of many concepts across the wider curriculum. Sydney J Harris' perspective words this best, as like him I believe "the purpose of education is to turn mirrors into windows" where children are encouraged to ask questions through curiosity, instead of merely accepting everything as fact.
My aim is for pupils to question why an orange is named after it's colour for instance, unlike other fruits, or why it is said to not rhyme with any other word, with the perception that resources are more than just inanimate objects.
My knowledge and study on international approaches in countries such as the USA, Italy, and Uganda has taught me the contrast it has to the UK's EYFS and National Curriculum.
Play and learning which has enfolded over decades in various countries, adds emphasis in utilising the surroundings: where a blank piece of paper is the foundation of a piece of artwork, and an empty space is the opportunity for physical development.
I understand that teaching children is a challenging and pivotal role, where a professional is not only responsible for the learning of one child, but thirty or so throughout the academic year.
That said; I am determined when I am working with children, to always have an encouraging approach and enthusiasm for teaching.
This will allow me to play a huge role in education, and rekindle my long-term studies at university through a masters and doctorate.
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