Neil shares more detail about their practice us and how they felt about being shortlisted for a Bristol Teaching Award.
- Could you tell BILT a bit more about your shortlisting?
I’ve been shortlisted for the Outstanding Personal Tutoring award. In some respects I’m feeling surprised, happy and pleased…but also a little uncomfortable. I work as a tutor on the PGCE Science Programme as part of a team of brilliant tutors so I don’t feel I’m especially exceptional as a personal tutor.
- Could you tell us a bit more about your practice?
We’re here to train the next generation of secondary Science teachers. We know at the moment schools are incredibly complex institutions and we are working to create a system which develops students to become excellent mentors themselves. In a sense, to make this part of their normal practice by modelling tutoring process for them.
It’s a real privilege to be working with outstanding students (who are undertaking the programme whilst working), so there is a need for the tutor in their role to be accessible and create a real sense of a community ethos around tutoring; this has been something which I’ve brought with me from my previous experience in secondary school education.
I’ve always been an early adopter of technology and really valued what blended learning can bring. Both Teams and Zoom have in some ways revolutionized my way of tutoring. I typically allow students to contact me via this way in an afternoon, from perhaps between half-past 5 and half-past 7; this can really allow for support with some of the nuts and bolts around practical aspects of teacher training, but also allows opportunity for any reassurance.
Typical study tends to be linear, but teaching is much more multi-dimensional and with many different elements to consider all at the same time and so the blended learning allows that to be effectively supported.