Breadcrumbs

Meet the teachers

26 October 2018

Pictured left to right: Barb Whyte, Kath Fielden, Morgan Pearson, Emma Frost

A highly anticipated part of the second year programme for teaching students in Tauranga is a Q&A session with recently graduated teachers.

Faculty of Education senior lecturer Barb Whyte says the session is a very important one for her students. “All of the graduates have had different experiences in their teaching journeys but they are invariably enthusiastic about their chosen career path,” she says. “The session helps the students really start to grasp the responsibility they will be taking on for the learning of a class of children.”

One of the teachers sharing their experiences was Morgan Pearson who teaches Year 5 and 6 pupils at Ellerslie School in Auckland. Morgan offered practical advice to students around finding a job. “It’s all down to the work you put in beforehand,” she says. “Also, make sure the schools you apply to are a good fit for you. Fresh out of uni, you’ll take any job, but you want a job that you’ll be happy in for at least two years.” Morgan describes her teaching style as inquisitive, diverse and fun. “I always make the learning fun for the kids so that they are enjoying their time at school and learning without realising it,” she says. “They are more likely to take in the information if there is a memory behind the learning.”

A Year 1 and 2 class teacher at Arataki School, Emma Frost wanted the students to understand that it's OK not to know everything during their first year. “Your mentor and other teachers are there to guide and help you on your teaching journey,” she says. Emma also sounded a warning about not spreading yourself too thin. “Look after yourself – as a beginning teacher you will want to do it all at once and then do some more. It’s going to be busy with lots of firsts and you must remember time for yourself, whānau and interests outside teaching.” Engaging, positive and flexible are three words that Emma believes encapsulate her teaching style, and she says she always gets a buzz when she can see that her pupils have understood the learning. “I have found a key indicator to be when they refer to the learning after the lesson and apply it in other areas,” she says.

Kath Fielden’s advice to the students that there is no set path when starting your career, was borne of her own experience. Now a full-time teacher at Omanu School, she started out as finance officer. “I decided that I needed to take some time before jumping right into a full-time teaching job,” she says. “Doing the finance job and relieving gave me time to consider where I wanted my career to begin and what year level I prefer teaching.” In her classroom, Kath says she is positive, creative and purposeful and she encourages her pupils to discuss the purpose of their learning at every opportunity, thereby helping them to retain and value the knowledge.

Barb Whyte says all the teachers who participated in the Q&A session recalled how valuable it had been to them when they were second year students. “It serves to reignite their goal to be teachers and they come to appreciate there are various pathways and careers that can be taken with a Bachelor of Teaching degree,” she says. “They also come to recognise that while there are ups and downs as beginning teachers, the rewards are enormous and most satisfying.”

Related stories

Uni students can get a Jump Start on study

Jump Start gives students the opportunity to knock off their first 100-level paper of their…

Free joint regional bus service announced for tertiary students

A free regional bus service for tertiary students will be launched in 2020 across the…

Tertiary providers collaborate on study options expo for tangata whenua of Tauranga Moana

Nga Kete o Te Wānanga is a free event for tangata whenua to connect Māori…

Research uncovers sense of belonging for refugee and immigrant families through early childhood education

Two major studies are putting refugee and immigrant children in early childhood education at the…

Waikato students can “breathe easy” thanks to the Thomas Pay-it-Forward Scholarship

A new scholarship is available to University of Waikato students thanks to the generosity of…

Lead researcher Prof Albert Bifet

Waikato Data Scientists awarded $13 million

Data scientists at the University of Waikato have been awarded $13 million from the Government.

STEM Fest

Uni campus hosts STEM Festival in Tauranga

As a main sponsor of the country's first world-class STEM Festival (STEMFest) event, the University…

World class science and engineering facilities for Tauranga

The University has opened new laboratories at its Tauranga campus...

Award winning University of Waikato Tauranga CBDCampus

Triple win for University of Waikato’s Tauranga CBD Campus at the property awards

The University of Waikato’s Tauranga CBD campus was celebrated at the 2019 Bay of Plenty…

Rt Hon Sir Anand Satyanand

Rt Hon Sir Anand Satyanand elected as new Chancellor

The University of Waikato Council today elected Rt Hon Sir Anand Satyanand GNZM QSO as…

Professors Robyn Longhurst and Lynda Johnston

Research looks into ‘belonging’ for disabled people

Understanding why and where disabled people feel they belong is the focus of a joint…

Historic gathering of Indigenous experts

The Native American and Indigenous Studies Association has started in Hamilton, with a record number…