Specialist Experience and Skills
I am a highly qualified educator with over 12 years’ experience working with students with ASD, dyspraxia, anxiety, dyslexia, ADHD, memory or processing difficulties and other special educational needs. I have experience of working with students of all ages; age 4 until young adults. I have received specialist training in Autism through Kent University and the Autism Association and have completed training delivered by King’s College London on ADHD. As a class teacher in the UK, I have had a lot of experience working with external agencies such as Educational Psychologists, Speech and Lang... Read More
I am a highly qualified educator with over 12 years’ experience working with students with ASD, dyspraxia, anxiety, dyslexia, ADHD, memory or processing difficulties and other special educational needs. I have experience of working with students of all ages; age 4 until young adults. I have received specialist training in Autism through Kent University and the Autism Association and have completed training delivered by King’s College London on ADHD. As a class teacher in the UK, I have had a lot of experience working with external agencies such as Educational Psychologists, Speech and Language Therapists, Social Workers, Counsellors, and CAMHS (Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services). I have completed a master’s degree in Education at the Institute of Education, London, and I am currently working on a PhD in learning, curriculum, and equity in education with the same institute. I have also delivered and instructed enrichment and sporting activities, as sport is one of my specialist areas. I also worked for several years teaching music and performing arts to students from disadvantaged backgrounds and students with SEN for Enter CIC, a community interest company in the Northeast of England.
My specialist experience working with students with dyslexia, dyspraxia (developmental co-ordination disorder), and dyscalculia: When tutoring students with dyslexia, dyspraxia, and dyscalculia, I use a structured approach for all subjects. This approach is systematic and cumulative, and all content is provided in a structured, logical way. This approach allows students to gradually master topics, build confidence, and is mindful of the memory processing needs of the student. Additionally, I use explicit instructions to enable the student to understand new content, as well as adapting the lessons to suit the unique needs of the student and to tackle any misconceptions that arise. Depending on the needs of the student, I make use of verbal, written, and visual teaching methods so students can access the information without feeling overwhelmed. With students who struggle with spatial awareness, I use adapted resources so students can access activities at their level and progress. I have found that students often benefit from guidance and hands-on support with their fine and gross motor movements, and by overlearning actions they feel more prepared to have a go on their own. Finally, I use many research-informed strategies such as simplifying instructions, highlighting and blocking essential information, providing suitable assistive technology, and allowing extra practice time to support my students, develop their confidence, and create a learning environment where they can excel.
My specialist experience teaching mathematics (including GCSEs): As well as being a science subject specialist, I have been accepted onto the NCETM Aspiring Leader Programme. I have received substantial training in Mastery Maths, and this has had a significant impact on the progress of my students with SEN. I maximise the use of manipulatives and visual aids to support my students, which gives them the tools and confidence to tackle mathematical problems and calculations. Reasoning and problem solving is a vitally important part of a student's mathematics education, and I use research-informed teaching approaches to enable my students to become confident in a variety of problem-solving strategies. I have vast experience tutoring primary, secondary, and further education students in mathematics. I have knowledge of GCSE and A Level examination boards, and make sure my students have the exam and study skills they need to succeed. I fully believe that anybody can excel at mathematics with the right instruction and practice routines in place. To ensure my students have everything they need to practise throughout the week, I provide extra materials and resources after each session.
My specialist experience teaching students with memory processing difficulties, anxiety and of building self-esteem, confidence, and independence: I have vast experience of using mindfulness strategies and growth mindset approaches in my teaching practice. I have extensive knowledge of how information needs to be structured and broken down to avoid sensory overload, and provide real-life, purposeful activities for students to practice what they have learned. I am passionate about discovery learning approaches, as this gives children confidence and agency in their own learning journeys. This also allows students to learn in a way that they feel most comfortable. I value positivity in my teaching, and this brings out the best in my students. To allow my students to become independent and autonomous in their learning, I teach structured study and revision strategies to older students. Furthermore, I set and monitor homework activities to ensure students have goals to work towards and responsibilities to fulfill. By building up the level of independence gradually, students can manage their study time effectively and develop key skills they need in their education and adult life without being overwhelmed.
My specialist experience providing fun sessions to help students engage in learning: For learners to be successful, I believe they need to be enjoying what they are doing. Every learner is unique, and I spend time getting to know the skills, interests, and needs of my students. By doing this, I make sure the learning is relevant and purposeful for them, which increases engagement and enjoyment. I have many years' experience teaching all kinds of learners. This has equipped me with a library of games, activities, and approaches to bring my sessions to life and create exciting, purposeful learning journeys for all my students.
My specialist experience teaching English comprehension, writing, spelling, and working with reluctant writers: I have taught reading, writing, and spelling to children of all ages and adults preparing for academic studies. As well as writing at doctoral level, I have had specialist training in phonics, reading comprehension, and oracy. The English language is fascinating, and my lessons are filled with games, exploration, and practice to hone my students' skills and creativity with language. I use a wide range of literature, so my students are well-equipped to express themselves in many literary forms, and I strive to develop a love of reading in my students which lasts a lifetime. I have worked with many reluctant writers with great success. I plan purposeful, engaging activities and think carefully about topics that interest my students. I use talk for writing and oracy strategies, so my students can develop their ideas verbally before putting pencil to paper, and I make use of online tools such as blogs and video editing software to develop their creativity while improving their computer literacy. I teach the whole writing process from drafting, editing, and publishing, and work with my students to illustrate, design, and take pride in their work.
My specialist experience teaching children with speech and language difficulties: I have a lot of experience of working with EAL (English as an Additional Language) and SEN students to develop their speech and language in my roles internationally and in the UK. I have experience of working closely with Speech and Language Therapists and Educational Psychologists to tailor interventions and teaching to suit the needs and personality of my students. I also provide the tools and scaffolding that the students need to be able to achieve, progress and develop confidence in both their academic and social communication. I am experienced using different interventions, such as Lexia, to pinpoint the areas of need and deliver tailored phonics, language, or comprehension interventions. I am also an accomplished musician and have taught guitar for over 10 years. I use singing in my teaching to develop vocabulary, speech, and confidence with my students. For several years, I taught music to an adult learner with autism, cerebral palsy, visual impairment, and severe learning difficulties. This was my initial introduction to SEN and something I have been passionate about ever since.
My specialist experience teaching students with ASD and/or ADHD: I have extensive experience in working with students with ASD and ADHD in mainstream and private primary schools, and on a 1:1 basis. I understand the impact of sensory overload and look for innovative ways to tailor the learning for autistic students to provide the structure and routines necessary for success. I utilise technology so students can access the curriculum and express themselves with clarity and confidence. I have worked in schools with many diagnosed special educational needs, including autism, ADHD, global development delay, and with some children who have experienced significant trauma. This experience has shown the necessity to cater to the unique needs of each student for them to succeed. I am aware of the need for clear, succinct instruction, visual aids to support processing, and the use of differentiation to support students’ needs. As my partner is diagnosed with ADHD, learning about ADHD and working with students with ADHD is something I am passionate about. I am mindful of working memory constraints with some students, and in my lessons, I incorporate movement breaks and scaffolding to ensure that the learning is manageable, and the teaching is successful.
Specialist experience teaching students with sensory needs, co-ordination, and dexterity problems: As an experienced musician and music teacher, I know how important coordination, dexterity, and motor control is. I have a wide range of games and activities that help develop these skills in my students, which transfers to confidence in academic skills such as handwriting. Furthermore, I am also an experienced sports and fitness instructor and hold a first class undergraduate degree and a master's degree in Sport and Exercise Science. With this knowledge, I can support students to develop physical fitness, gross and fine motor control, good posture, and flexibility. As an expert in teaching team sports, I am also able to support with skills such as spatial awareness, ball and racket skills, and teamwork.
My specialist experience mentoring students: I have a lot of experience mentoring and supporting students of all ages in their social, academic, and personal needs from primary school to colleagues in higher education. In my mentoring, I am patient but enthusiastic, I share expertise and skills from my own background, and I am mindful of how I communicate to suit the needs of my mentees. I am experienced in giving constructive, reflective feedback to students from all backgrounds, and aim to provide my mentees with skills in reflecting and setting manageable goals, as well as building the confidence needed to excel in new situations and be successful in every aspect of their life. My main aim in mentoring students is to build positive relationships based on respect and active listening. I have experience working with many students who are anxious and provide a safe space where they can express themselves and develop strategies to look after their mental health.
My specialist experience teaching students with PMLD: I have previous experience teaching music to students with profound and multiple learning disabilities. This included students with severe autism, those in wheelchairs or with cerebral palsy, and some who were registered blind. Creative teaching is necessary for these students to cater for their distinctive needs and create an environment where their talents can flourish. Although my experience with PMLD is in music teaching, the skills and knowledge gained are transferable to many other situations. For some students, I have adapted instruments and resources to make them accessible, whether it be colour or tactile experiences, or experimenting with various positions and tunings to accommodate mobility needs. I believe that all learners can find fulfillment and enjoyment if the teacher is accepting and keeps the learner at the heart of every decision
My specialist experience teaching EAL students: Since qualifying as a primary school teacher, I was a founding teacher in an English international programme in Thailand, which involved designing the school’s first curriculum and developing the initial school policies. Subsequently, I have been a music subject lead in another international school in Thailand with a significant percentage of students with SEN and all with English as an additional language. Since returning to the UK, I have worked as a science subject lead in a school with high disadvantage, EAL and SEN. Recently, I have received excellent feedback from Ofsted during a curriculum deep-dive in my subject. I have also led the school in achieving the Primary Science Quality Mark (PSQM).