Please tell us a little about your background in education. Why did you decide to become involved in education? What are some of the roles you’ve had and what does your current role involve?
I have been a primary teacher for almost 10 years. One look at my garage (which hasn’t had a car parked in it for 7 years) is definite proof of this! I began casual teaching during my last semester of uni and my current school is one of the first schools I started working in.
They employed me for a few days here and there, then 3 days a week on an RFF program, then offered me a year on a kindergarten class once I graduated. Another year on class after that, then another and another…
Since I’ve taught in the same school for the majority of my career one can be forgiven for assuming I’ve been fairly sheltered. In actual fact the variety of experiences and challenges I’ve had as well as the range of staff, students and families I’ve worked with is incredibly diverse.
I have been fortunate enough to be involved in some amazing professional development and had the opportunity to take on a number of roles, including mentoring beginning and pre service teachers and heading committees.
Today I’m relieving assistant principal, a position I’ve held for just over 2 years. This year I ‘m off class and have the responsibility of coordinating our Learning and Support Team, looking after student welfare, engagement and attendance. My role also includes, but is not limited to, supervising our Infants classes, running an Enrichment Group, supporting Early Stage 1 and Stage 1 classes in Literacy and working with Stage 2 students.
My reasons for becoming a teacher are not very inspiring, often when students ask me I tell them “I loved school and I never wanted to leave”. There is some truth to that, I did love going to school as a kid and I still do as an adult.
Other than wanting to be like my favourite teacher, Mrs Hogan and my (bordering on unhealthy) love of all things stationery, especially stickers and pens, my family has also influenced my chosen career.
In 1970 my grandpa left Serbia with one bag and $31 in search of a better life for his family. 10 months later my grandma and dad joined him in Australia. Both my grandparents worked ridiculously hard. My parents now have their own business and they work ridiculously hard.
Their sacrifices and determination have always been motivating factors. I am the first person in my family to be born in Australia and the first to attend uni. Becoming a teacher, one of society’s most important professions, is a way of expressing my gratitude and appreciation.
Who or what keeps you inspired and motivated in your work?
Learning keeps me motivated and inspired, both my own learning and the learning of others, especially our students.
For the past few years working closely with our Instructional Leader on Teacher Clarity, Learning Intentions and Success Criteria and looking at the work of Hattie and Wiliam has been so exciting. The powerful effect this has had on our students is equally exciting.
What do you see as some of the biggest rewards and challenges for people working in education today?
Today so much in education is changing that often the rewards and the challenges are one in the same.
It is definitely an exciting time to be an educator.
What role do you see EdutweetOz playing on the education scene in Australia and what are your hopes for the account this week?
EdutweetOz is a fantastic forum through which educators in all parts of Australia can discuss, debate and share ideas and opinions. No matter our role in education or where we work, we all share a common goal; to do the best for our students.
I hope that this week I can make a valuable contribution to Australian educators and EdutweetOz.