(cc image by The Majestic Fool)
I’ve got a big dilemma at the moment. Do I stay with what I’m doing or leap off the edge?
I’ve just spent a year teaching NCFE2 to a fine group of teaching assistants. I’ve built up lots of resources and lesson plans and I’d actually started to feel that I might just know what I’m doing.
Then whoosh, everything changes, again. The place I work isn’t offering NCFE2 next year, only NVQ 2 because of changes in funding. They propose that I just switch to that instead but NVQ2 is a very different proposition:
- Ideally meant for those already employed, it is less easy for people on voluntary placements. Yet it is mostly volunteers that have already signed up for the course.
- It involves a much higher commitment to placement observations than NCFE
- No scope for simulations – everything has to happen in school, no role plays.
- Much more involvement from placement schools and teachers. Hard to get for volunteers rather than staff members.
- The dreaded grids need to be tracked, collated and generally understood by all concerned.
- It’s just been revised and the text books are now all out of date.
- I haven’t a clue how to organise the materials or sessions so I’d have to start again from scratch with my planning.
Add to this a higher tutor/ student ratio and I’m left wondering if this is going to be more trouble than it is worth.
All of this doesn’t even begin to address the other issues I have with teaching at the moment.
I have been totally unable to find any sort of online network of UK based peers interested in adult education at pre-degree level. No forums, bloggers, twitterers, ning groups, nix. So no personal learning network of peers again this year. (Nothing wrong with all my great primary school network but a few peers would be nice)
The paperwork is daunting, hard to keep on top of and NVQ has even more of it.
I hated the Preparing to Teach in the Life Long Learning Sector course with a vengeance. It was a real pain and had me tearing my hair out. Teaching NVQ would mean embarking on yet another course, this time for assessors of NVQs.
On the plus side I mostly enjoyed the actual teaching sessions, the interactions, watching people grow in confidence and competence. I quite enjoyed the school visits and learning to navigate my way round unfamiliar parts of London.
Not teaching next year feels very high risk. It means I’m totally dependant on my writing and my online activities to provide me with an income. The return might be that with more energy and input from me my other stuff really takes off.
Shall I jump and hope that I can fly?
(cc image by SFTC/Gill)