I’ve always been a sporty person. I played netball and football for school, college and county teams and loved contemporary dance as well. But, when I took my GCSE in PE, it was the theory behind sport that I fell in love with.
I was really inspired by my PE teacher at high school. For me, learning about physiology and anatomy was one of my favourite things and I chose a degree that combined my ambition to teach sport with my desire to understand more about the science behind it. My tutors at Edge Hill have been so supportive and a great source of knowledge. They always reflect and provide us with first-hand knowledge and experience, which helps us put things into real life context.
The course has opened my eyes to a lot of new things. I’ve discovered a passion for working with children with special educational needs and disabilities (SEND) after volunteering in a SEND school. I supported children with a range of ability levels.
I learnt that you can adapt any lesson to be inclusive, you’ve just got to be creative. I think this approach to teaching can be just as effective in mainstream schools as well, as they are good teaching strategies regardless of ability level. That’s something I’d never realised or really thought about.
I’ve had the opportunity to undertake placements with all ages up to 21, and in a range of settings. I especially enjoyed working in a school in a more deprived area. I went to a bit of a tough school myself and sport was a form of escapism for me, so I see a lot of myself in the children I taught in that school.
This placement sparked an interest in the impact of sport on disadvantaged children and their life chances. I believe education and sport work together to set young people up for a successful, adventurous life.
One thing I never thought I would do on a sports degree is travel. I spent 10 weeks volunteering at Camp California, which is an American-style summer camp in Croatia for children from all over the world. It gave me so much experience that I could bring back and use in my placements. It was the best time of my life. I learnt so much about teaching, as well as about myself as a person, and I wouldn’t have had that opportunity without Edge Hill.