A Day in the Life of a Teaching Student at Macquarie University

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If you’re considering becoming a Teacher after you leave high school – first of all, kudos to you – it’s a career that can literally change lives and one that requires passion and commitment.


Find out what a Teaching degree involves


But before you sign up to a teaching degree, it’s a great idea to research what you’ll be in for.

“Through my degree I’ve been able to find out exactly what kind of teacher I want to be when I graduate, all with the university’s support.”

Speaking to current students at Open Days or through online chats, talking with the lecturers at universities and other provider; could give you a much better understanding of how much work is involved and what kinds of studies you’ll be doing.

Meet Ella Reilly, she’s in her final Year (four)  studying  a double degree Bachelor of Arts majoring in Education with a Bachelor of Education (primary) at Macquarie University. She very kindly took some time out of her busy schedule to give us some pointers about what her days often look like.

A final year student’s average day

A typical day whilst you’re studying for an education degree could be teaching as part of your practical, catching up on lectures, spending time networking with and being mentored by colleagues in the staff room, hanging out with  uni friends, or squeezing in some casual work.

Ella says;

“two days are never the same. I love that each day is totally unpredictable and forces you to go with the flow.”

7-8am Arrive at school – coffee for me and the teaching supervisor

8am-3pm Teaching lessons, sitting in on classes, lesson planning and preparation

“Prac teaching is the highlight of any teacher education student’s journey through uni and I feel like I’ve finally got my head around the basics of “how do I actually teach 25 little humans?” and “what if they ask me a question that I don’t know the answer to?””

Breaks and lunch – there are opportunities each day to grab quick coffee and meal break, depending on what lessons you have to prepare for, or if you’re expected to help out on duty with the students

3-8pm Time to take off my teaching hat, catch up with friends on campus for a meal and some entertainment

8-9pm Home to catch up with work – one of my casual jobs is writing lecture notes for students in my cohort with disabilities so after tweaking those, they’re sent off

9-10pm Time to prepare for the next day and wind down. Often reading one of the books recommended to me by my students (always consists of princesses and dragons) is usually my favourite way to switch my mind off and get ready to do it all again tomorrow.

It’s all worth it though, not only has Ella been able to explore her “passion for inclusive and Indigenous education” through completing one of her practical units in a rural community which she says “is a dream come true”; also “with the support of lecturers, the Education Society and my practicum supervisors, I’ve been able to secure a full-time teaching position for next year”.

Thanks Ella and all the best for the start of your teaching career, from the team at Study Work Grow.

Still thinking of a career as a teacher? Great – you can find more resources that may be useful on the Study Work Grow website and our updated Entry to Teaching Guide for 2022 applicants along with the Handbook are coming out soon.

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