Experience vs Enthusiasm

September 8th, 2014

I’ve spent much of this week planning our Developing Teachers Programme (designed for trainees, NQTs and R(ecently)QTs) and it got me thinking about how rich a resource these teachers are in our schools. We all know how their new ideas and enthusiasm can really benefit the departments they are in but I still think the overriding feeling regarding them is one of risk management. We don’t always give them key exam classes and we worry that they won’t manage that tricky Year 9 class and of course, there are valid and real reasons for this but I have always felt that it’s sometimes hard to beat the quality of a quality new teacher.

Obviously, there is much to be said about an experienced teacher who knows the spec inside out, has fine-tuned their assessment strategies and understands how different learners make progress but those new to the profession have so much to offer too.

I have friends who are parents who are wary when they see a new teacher on their child’s timetable but I have always tried to reassure them that their child is likely to experience lessons which have been planned meticulously, resources sourced from wide and innovative places and an enthusiasm which has not been sullied by doing the same thing year after year after year.

Furthermore, those new to the profession engage in more regular and thoughtful reflection than those of us who’ve been doing it a while tend to do. They are in the habit of being learners themselves and learn as much from their lessons about their craft as their students learn about their subject.