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What Does a Teacher Trainee Need to Succeed? Advice from a SCITT Student Mentor

In the latest of our teacher training blog series, one of our SCITT student mentors shares what she thinks a trainee teacher needs to succeed in their training and become a successful, confident early years or primary teacher!

How would you describe the role of a nursery or early primary teacher?

The role of a teacher in nursery school has to encompass more than just teaching. Much of the role is about supporting families and this support then has a positive impact on a child’s development.

We can’t look at a child in isolation; we need to understand the local community and the family context in a respectful way. It’s the 10-minute conversation with parents at the end of the day which can support home learning and can lead to progression and positive outcomes. 

What do you think is the most important part of your job as an Early Years Teacher? 

The key thing for me, as a teacher, is to understand that it’s a reciprocal process between you and the children; you need to understand what they can do and what they enjoy doing.

It’s about doing “with” not doing “to” and shaping the curriculum with them – I think that’s something that every teacher trainee should try to get their head around from day one. A skillful, effective teacher uses resources and the environment to support this process and support young children’s learning. 

How would you describe your ideal SCITT candidate? 

The right SCITT candidate, first and foremost, has to be somebody who likes young children! They need to be able to appreciate, as an EY teacher, that it’s a lot about care and support, as well as education.

They must be:  - Creative  - Responsive to children’s needs  - Knowledgeable about child development  - Be aware that each child is different and that a ‘one size fits all’ approach does not work 

Why do you think the SCITT programme is so good for trainee teachers?

The structure of the CREC EYP SCITT programme is supportive and the blend of practice and theory allows trainees to research and consolidate skills.

The course gives the trainees status and the platform to develop and grow, whilst at the same time giving them the confidence to ask for help. They’re able to say “I don’t understand”, meaning they can then get support and advice on how to improve when they need to.  


If you're thinking about teacher training, make sure you take a look at our School Direct route to becoming an early years or primary teacher. 

UCAS applications for our 2019/20 programme open on the 9th October 2018. Search provider code 25R to find us. 

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