A woman who helped make a difference to the lives of children on the other side of the world during the pandemic has completed her degree.
During the pandemic, Ella took advantage of a collaboration the University had with schools in India, teaching two children from Mumbai each week online. She supported them with their pronunciation of English, along with their English writing.
These lessons continued for two and a half months, during which time Ella said the children made much progress.
“There were many challenges with online learning and being so far away,” she said. “I am a person who loves visual teaching. When I teach children, I will be as physical and visual using objects to support my students. Therefore, being online and being across the other side of the world was very difficult, as I could not support them in person when they needed help. The main problem was the internet difficulties.
“The two children I had in my class had very different abilities, both living in the slums of Mumbai. Even though there were language barriers there, I used my initiative to create ways for them to understand me, this was using pictures, and whiteboards on the screen.”
Ella planned her lessons to make sure they were interesting, fun, and worked for both children’s language abilities.
Ella has achieved First Class Honours in her Early Childhood studies degree.
“This experience has already improved my teaching skills before I even started my PGCE at Worcester, as I learnt new ways of breaking instructions down, to support the children in their understanding. In settings, I have not had the opportunity to work with an EAL (English as Additional Language) child, therefore working with two students from India with basic English skills was such a privilege and I would recommend the collaboration to anybody.”
Ella has gone on to study for a teacher training qualification through the Early Years PGCE course at the University of Worcester. “I aspire to work with children who have experienced trauma, and adverse life conditions in the near future,” said the former Queen Elizabeth High School pupil. “Working with children within a Pupil Referral Unit on placement, changed my career mindset completely, and this is something I have wanted to do for a while now.” She said she chose the University of Worcester as it is one of the best for teaching and she knew people who had studied there and gone on to do great things.