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Ready, steady, teach - Faith rewarded

I didn't have a job by the time September came. But on the first day of term I received a phone call from a school with a reputation. I was willing to give any school a try. I hadn't been in a classroom since I finished my PGCE in June, but I had to start somewhere.

The school had been in special measures since Easter, which made me apprehensive, yet I had a fabulous day with pupils who made me laugh. I gave it three days, then I was asked to stay until October half-term, which I did.

It wasn't easy. I was ashamed of some lessons where there wasn't much learning going on, but my confidence grew slowly. As each week went by the classes settled and every time I overcame a problem my confidence grew even more.

Children are an endless source of comments that make us giggle and I loved telling the stories of the little things that made me laugh.

I never really had time to think about being alone in the classroom. The buck stops with me, there is nobody to hold my hand, my classroom is my own and slowly, my pupils and I have warmed to each other.

The school has come out of special measures and I now have a permanent job there teaching RE. I enjoy having continuity with classes. Sometimes the lessons don't go exactly as I want, but that's life.

My Year 9s drove me mad in that first half-term, but have improved. I'm pleased to say I can see it in their faces when they are learning. However, nothing surprised me more than having a girl telling me that she enjoys my subject, but only with me.

If I can have inspired and encouraged that class in my first year as a teacher then I can look for a permanent position for next year knowing that I can make a difference. We might think they are scary, but pupils truly enjoy making us smile

Kimberley Heavey teaches at New Charter Academy in Ashton under Lyne, Greater Manchester.

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