I can recall my ‘mid-semester uni holidays’ – the five to six week break where there was a lot of time on my hands. I’m sure everyone who has studied, or currently studying, at a Tertiary level can agree. The first few days were relaxing, but as the holiday period wore on, personally, boredom took over. I looked for things to do, as I am sure many others did too, I wondered how I could make time go past. So I played video games, watched TV shows/movies, completed housework, caught up with uni friends, and did other things as well.
However, the above activities kept me entertained for so long before boredom took over again. So one day I thought to myself, I wonder if I could visit my old high school and say “hello”. So that I did – I reached out to an old high school PDHPE teacher of mine, in fact, I got along with all of my PDHPE teachers back at school. This is where I put my ‘uni holidays’ into value. I asked if I could go in to ‘visit and observe’ in which they were extremely happy for me to do. So that year, and the year after, I observed and watched all of the PDHPE teachers within the faculty – paid close attention to how they ran their lessons, how they spoke to students, and their presence in class. As I observed, I chose the attributes that different teachers had shown which suited me as a teacher, attributes such as humour, appropriate strictness, connection with students etc, are all the things I believe I possess as a teacher due to this early ‘voluntary’ exposure.
By volunteering my time during the holiday period, I had an advantage over other university students. I knew that in the future, there could be a chance that I would compete against other university students for a teaching position. So therefore, this experience would give me a slight edge and would make me more employable compared to others.
In closing, experiences are valuable. I encourage all readers of this blog who are studying or early into your employment to gain as much experience as you possibly can early on, as it will pay dividends in the long run. Money cannot buy experience.