As a secondary school student, I found English particularly interesting. I became fascinated with the fact that the same words on the page could be seen in many alternative ways by various people. I slowly began to realise that whether it was an extract of a poem, a novella or a play, all literature seemed to expand my imagination.
Intrigued by the nature of English as a subject, especially the neverending exploration of texts that can resonate with any individual on the planet, I continued my journey by enrolling at The University of Sheffield to complete an Undergraduate degree in English Literature and Theatre. Suddenly, my eyes were opened up to world literature, studying modules such as ‘Representing the Holocaust and WWII in Literature’, ‘Contemporary Theatre’ and ‘Applied Theatre -Theatre for Education’, as well as providing me with the opportunity to specialise in ‘African American Literature’ and ‘19th-Century Women Playwrights’ in my final year. Having a dual degree additionally provided me with a pathway to further explore the connection between the words on paper and the beauty of performances – after all, never forget that Shakespeare’s plays were written to be performed.
With regards to teaching, I have always envisioned myself as a teacher. My mother enjoys telling the stories of five-year-old Miss Vernon sitting her teddy bears in a precise row and registering them, so that they were ready for their lesson every Saturday morning. I started my teaching journey through Explore Learning, providing both English and Maths tuition for students aged four to 16, which provided me with my first opportunity to guide students towards a fearless mindset and a desire to show endeavour during challenging situations.
I continued as a tutor for five years, during my A Levels and degree and, with the addition of positive role models of my incredibly supportive English and Drama teachers in my secondary school, I was inspired to instill a similar drive in the younger generations, which led me into teaching. After graduating in 2019 with a 2:1 BA, I embarked on the route to become a teacher at Manchester Metropolitan University to complete a Secondary English PGCE with QTS. Completing my PGCE qualification during a global pandemic proposed its own challenges, but I am incredibly proud of my achievements and feel extremely lucky to have the chance to work with the amazing staff and students at King’s.
My ultimate goal as a teacher; to have students remember their English teacher in the same light that I remember mine, as individuals who never gave up on me.
In the words of Angela Davis:
“We have to talk about liberating minds as well as liberating society.”
Our younger generations have the ability to change the world, and I, for one, am excited to play a small part in this process and see the transformation.