From Dark Matter to Bright Futures: Training to Teach Physics | ATT Focus Fridays

Added: 27th September 2021 by Ark Teacher Training

In this month’s ATT Focus Fridays article, we’re deep-diving into what it’s like training to teach physics at Ark Teacher Training: what’s great about teaching physics? How do you know if you have the right qualifications? What do physics trainees have to say about the programme?

For answers to these questions and more, continue reading…

Why train to teach physics?

As a physics teacher, you have the privilege of scientifically unpacking the universe with young people as you expand their knowledge on topics such as electricity, convection, energy and astrology.

The ultimate reward is seeing firsthand how your passion and enthusiasm for physics directly impacts the engagement and performance of your pupils.

When speaking to our trainees about what they love about teaching physics, it’s always one of three answers:

  • Witnessing that ‘eureka’ moment when a pupil’s hard work pays off.
  • Seeing pupils broaden their horizons with every lesson.
  • The impact of their teaching on pupils’ understanding.

To top it all off, you’ll be giving young people the knowledge and skills they need to achieve their aspirations in life, whatever they may be.

Ellyn’s Story

“I wanted to study physics because I enjoyed it at school. I really liked the use of maths and problem solving – that’s probably why I like classical mechanics so much!

I have always had teaching in the back of my mind as a career and after taking an optional module at university called “Teaching Physics in School” that included a weekly placement at a local school, I was hooked! After getting some experience in schools as a science technician, I decided to take the plunge and train to teach.

My favourite thing about teaching physics is helping pupils towards that ‘eureka’ moment and seeing them understand a concept or method. It is so rewarding when their hard work has paid off, knowing that you have been a part of that journey.

I chose Ark Teacher Training because I wanted to train in a school rather than at a university, while also having access to an excellent network of support and training. I have loved getting hands on experience and developing my skills in the classroom (and online because of COVID) and I have found putting training into practice straight away to be invaluable.” 

As a teacher, exploration within your field never stops

Teaching could be the way of working in the field of physics, maths or engineering that you hadn’t previously considered. You’ll be continuously expanding on your own subject knowledge, based on the most up-to-date research, with the support of our subject experts and subject knowledge enhancement courses.

What’s more, knowledge shared is knowledge doubled, making teaching the ultimate way of ensuring the continued exploration of not only physics, but science and engineering as a whole.

Nurture the genius among us

As our schools are in locations facing social and economic challenges, we understand the importance of young people having access to an excellent education in the sciences, regardless of their circumstances.

With a great education and support from excellent teachers, the future Albert Einsteins and Marie Curies have the resources they need to reach their full potential.

As Isabel Instone, senior tutor and head of curriculum and assessment at Ark Teacher Training, explains, “we believe every child deserves to be taught by a subject expert”. Physicists are best placed to reveal the “bigger picture” for pupils; they’re able to connect science with the real world and inspire young people to pursue further study and ultimately establish careers in science and engineering.

You don’t need a physics degree to teach physics

It’s a common misconception that you must have a first class honours degree in physics to teach it.

But to be eligible to teach physics with Ark Teacher Training, you actually need:

  • Grade C or above in Maths and English Language GCSE.
  • Either a grade B or above in A Level Physics, or a 2:2 degree or above in physics or a related subject, such as engineering, mathematics or computer science – to name only a few!
  • To have the right to live and work in the UK for the duration of the programme.
  • To not already hold Qualified Teacher Status.

Did you know?

Physics has one of the largest bursary and scholarship funds for 2021/22

Expert training, outstanding support

In addition to professional studies, you’ll benefit from training specifically designed for the physics subject with Ark Teacher Training.

You’ll be provided with everything you need, from expertise to support, to quickly become a fantastic physics teacher for your pupils. Our comprehensive programme ensures that you’re equipped with the skills to teach complex scientific ideas while you continuously improve your own subject and curriculum knowledge.

You will learn how to:

  • Consolidate and update your subject knowledge in topics.
  • Support and structure debate in science lessons.
  • Set-up a science technical and give a demonstration.
  • Teach subjects such as convection, electricity and energy.
  • Embed science capital into school life.
  • Teach the power of the story of an equation.

As the best route for quick development and growth into an amazing teacher, you’ll be placed in a school from your very first day. This also provides you with invaluable hands-on experience, the opportunity to have the biggest impact right away, and the privilege of seeing your progress alongside your pupils’ over a whole academic year.

In short, you bring the physics passion and expertise, and we’ll provide you with the skills and support you need to teach it exceptionally.

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