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Some Advice on TA roles please!

Discussion in 'Teaching assistants' started by Neenakint, Jun 25, 2015.

  1. Hi

    I'm looking for some advice please. Is it better to be a one to one teaching assistant or a classroom teaching assistant as a first role. I'm interested in both but I wondered as a one to one teaching assistant, does it limit you and would your career be pigeon-holed after that for only one to one roles?

    Any advice gratefully received!
  2. stargirl81

    stargirl81 New commenter

    I have only ever been a 1:1 with abit of general thrown in when someone has been off sick. I have an interview monday and it could be for either so obviously that school dont have a problem with the lack of general experience!

    I think being a general helps because you get more idea of how things are done, ie phonics assesments. Being 1:1 often leaves you isolated esp if you have to take your child out of the room alot. But its also VERY rewarding. Ok so i'm not much help am i?! LOL but i do also know that there will always be both jobs avaliable so just go for any that you see. You may find 1:1 isnt for you anyway,, x
  3. Trekkie

    Trekkie Occasional commenter

    In my experience, working as a class TA for a few years was incredibly useful when I changed to 1:1. Knowing the curriculum and understanding the progression was really helpful on those (many) occasions where I had to quickly adapt the work. Although I always had planning from the CT, there were times when I had to be creative in my delivery of the lesson!

  4. Underachiever

    Underachiever New commenter

    You haven't said whether you're interested in primary or secondary.

    In secondary working 1:1 can be very difficult - no 14 year old wants an extra adult turning up to all their lessons. It's a real skill to support a student towards independence, not dependence (I guess that's the same in primary, but without the extra hormones). I think it's always best to share the role with another TA. On the plus side, you do get an overview of the curriculum in all faculties. On the minus side, you may struggle working up to GCSE level in subjects you're not familiar with. I enjoy being a TA attached to a faculty.

    I think whether primary or secondary, working 1:1 depends to a large extend on your relationship with the student and their carer; some are easier than others! Personally, I would always opt for a classroom TA, but that's just me.

    Remember, if you're working 1:1, the job only lasts as long as the funding and funding for SEN is drying up. On the other hand, many TA jobs are temporary contracts these days anyway.

    Good luck.
  5. Saland45

    Saland45 New commenter

    Hi... There r pros and cons to both I feel. One to one can mean u r isolated sometimes and sometimes depending on the teacher u might not have any idea what is going on in the class and therefore it makes it difficult to adapt tasks on a moments notice!!! I have worked with other teachers who give u the plan and activities differentiated and others who leave it all up to you!!! And I mean all!!! I am quite observant and familiar with KS1 so it isn't too bad... I also feel that it isn't a good idea to have the same TA for years and years ( partly why I have left my current post) u can get too attached and so can the child, it is a tricky balance to foster independence ... On the plus side it is fascinating work and very rewarding... Special needs children can teach you so much ..... A TA you are more involved in the whole class and there is lots of variety... I personally enjoyed that too for different reasons... I don't think any jobs are permanent anymore ...the salary is not good for either really!!! X
  6. Thank you so much for the advice. I'm only interested in primary schools, know I'm not cut out for secondary pupils and all they bring!. Funding is always an issue and finding a job in the "right" school.

    Thanks again
  7. I've worked with children on a one to one basis, but day in and day out I've got no experience, I was thinking a benefit might be that you get to see all the key stages and early years and then are able to take that experience to future positions, but maybe its just better to get that experience as a classroom TA anyway.

    I heard recently that although there are jobs out there advertised, between 40-50 applications are received for every vacancy, so quite competitive, despite the pay, guess its more the convenience.

    Thanks everyone, you've certainly got me thinking......
  8. minnie me

    minnie me Star commenter

    Agree with above but just to add that all TAs should be offered equal of opportunity when it comes to CPD so even if you are primarily working with one student you should be the recipient of all / any training which is identified to support learners in general. I think many settings are looking for colleagues who are adaptable, flexible and rounded. If you have been working in some sort of ' specialist ' post then I am sure you can also turn this to your advantage. It's tough out there. Good Luck.

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