Monday, 18 May 2015

Mentally preparing myself

Yes I confess....I have an arts degree, I studied Textile Design at university.  I absolutely loved my degree but can feel the concerned looks from you all about how I will cope with a PGCE course.  I've heard from almost everyone that it will be the toughest year of my life and I that I must be mad!

My degree was very heavy on 'Independent Study', which I feel is quite a lazy way of teaching.  My taught hours at university were quite sparse in my first year and this only diminished through my second and third year.  Yes we had a lot of coursework to produce compared with some degrees where exams were the main form of assessment, but I'll admit I was able to coast along for the most part.

So you can imagine what I'm thinking, how will I cope with a demanding PGCE course when my undergraduate degree was a fairly smooth ride.  I'm coming at a PGCE course from a completely different place than I would have been straight after my BA though.  My confidence was rock bottom when I graduated and I went on to set up my own freelance design business where I worked from home.  This definitely didn't help matters, although I enjoyed it at first I could feel myself shrinking.  I barely saw anyone, I didn't want to go out and I began to hate designing and being on my own all day.

I had to make a change, so two years after graduating I began looking into other careers.  Teaching has always been on my horizon and I had looked into it at different stages of my life, but it had never been the right time, or I had been too swayed by the arts.  Now was the right time.

I gained school experience and have been volunteering at a primary school for almost a whole school year.  My confidence has soared since I've left the safety of my design studio and entered the chaos of the classroom, and I couldn't be happier!

How will I cope with a PGCE?

I've tried to prepare myself as much as possible.  I've read tons of blogs on the subject to try and get a picture of what the weeks will entail, what the placements will be like and the amount of work I'll have on my hands.  I don't think I will truly know until September and the course begins, but I like to be as prepared as I can be. Only three and a half months left!

How should I prepare for it? Any suggestions are welcome!