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Home > News > 2018 > January > Early career teachers & professional identity

Early career teachers & professional identity

Topics : Beginning EducatorsBEnet

Early career members shared their perceptions on what it means to be a professional, and how they have worked to develop their professional identities.


“There aren’t many other jobs with a main goal to set people up for the future,” early career teacher member Ashleigh Kaye said.

“The expectations for teachers to perform are so high,” Ms Kaye said.

Early career teacher member Bridget King said teaching isn’t something that anyone can do.

“It takes dedication, hard work and long hours.

“We as teachers need to have a skill-set of tools and approaches that help our students learn.

“Each child is an individual and to be able to teach 20-30 students in a way that meets each of their needs isn’t an easy task.

“I am a strong believer in life-long learning and as long as I am a teacher there is always something more I can do or learn to help my students,” Ms King said.

Developing as a professional

As an aspiring teacher, Anoma Pullen attended our union’s PD sessions about nurturing positive relationships, learning support in the classroom and the transition from provisional to full registration.

These – as well as sessions on art and science of teaching, nurturing the growth mindset and classroom management – have been held by our union to provide early career teachers the opportunity to develop their skills and professional identities.

“I found all sessions to be very helpful for both current and student teachers as the sessions gave us real strategies, and information from experienced teachers representing various schools.

“All sessions were also very engaging as we were given opportunities to ask questions and clarify real issues faced by teachers.

“The sessions were conducted by experienced teachers, lawyers and other professionals in education, so we were fully informed by experts in the field,” Ms Pullen said.

Enhancing your practice

Ms Kaye and Ms King found that the sessions complemented their current practice.

“As a teacher looking to move to full registration early in the new year it was beneficial to know how much time I had to gain full registration and what I could use as evidence,” Ms Kaye said.

“I have also started to include behaviour management techniques learnt during the Classroom Management session in my classroom.

“The presenters taught us through role plays and shared their behaviour management experiences with us.

“I had heard over and over again about the 10 essential skills to classroom management; however, I’ve never seen it explicitly demonstrated until attending the session,” Ms Kaye said.

Ms King appreciated that the presenters of the IEUA-QNT professional development sessions were teachers.

“I was given so many helpful resources that I am currently considering using next year,” Ms King said.

For more information about professional development sessions on offer visit our BEnet Facebook page at www.facebook.com/beginningeducators

Authorised by Terry Burke, Independent Education Union of Australia – Queensland & Northern Territory Branch, Brisbane.