United Teaching Blog

Training to Teach with a Young Family


United Teaching graduate and Art and Design Teacher Banan spoke to us about her unique journey into teaching, and her experience of training to teach whilst having a young family.

Explaining her background, Banan said: “I gained a PGCE in Art and Design for Secondary Education thirteen years ago. After graduating, I relocated to the Middle East to teach in British International Schools. I ended up staying out there for ten years and had three children. When we relocated to the UK, I wanted to get back into teaching, but I needed Qualified Teaching Status (QTS) to do so. I did my research and decided to train with United Teaching.”

When asked why she chose United Teaching for a training provider, Banan said: “I looked at all the different pathways available to gain QTS, and chose United Teaching based on very good reviews and recommendations I read online. I soon realised that United Learning had lots of schools that I was familiar with within my region – which sparked my interest further. From the offset, the process was smooth, welcoming and informative. I felt very supported and was guided through very well.”

Banan completed her teacher training with three young children at home. She said: “Organisation skills are very important and will get you through. I had to organise myself and my family. I arranged for my children to attend morning clubs and after-school clubs, and always made sure pick-ups and drop-offs were taken care of so that I could dedicate time to both my family and teaching.”

“Aside from childcare arrangements, I made sure things were done on time, I’d ticked off my tasks and I didn’t let one week’s workload carry on to the next. United Teaching are also great with their weekly briefings, which help you to prepare for the week ahead.

Speaking on her favourite part of teaching, Banan said: “I love my subject and enjoy delivering it with enthusiasm and excitement. The students can feel the energy that oozes out of you, and this is reflected in their attitude and outcomes.”

“I also love exploring new topics and areas of work through the lens of diversity, inclusion and equality – celebrating difference and making students more tolerant of others. With Art and Design, I have the ability to integrate this aspect within the work and open students’ eyes to different cultures and backgrounds. Coming from an international setting, I feel I’ve brought that element back with me which helps to create an inclusive teaching environment.”

Banan mentioned the constant support during both her training year and now as a qualified teacher, saying: “The school is very supportive if your child is ill, or if there’s something you don’t want to miss. For example, I got time off for my daughter’s nativity. My subject mentor works with me day to day, my professional mentor helps give insights and strategies, and I see my regional mentor every Friday. Everyone is always willing to listen and help and has supported me throughout my journey.”

Summing up her experience and decision to train with United Teaching, Banan said: “I’m very happy that I chose United Teaching and I work in a United Learning school. I feel it was the right choice for me, especially with having kids.”



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