BA (Hons) Geography and Business, Leeds University and a P.G.C.E. (Primary)
Jo is one of our longest serving and much loved Primary School Teachers with an impressive track record of supporting students through the Trafford and Independent Entrance Exams as well as SATs.
We asked her a few questions to introduce her to those of you who have not yet met her.
Describe your experience in education:
This is my 20th year working as a classroom teacher. My first appointment was at an outstanding primary in inner-city Leeds. I worked there for eight years before moving across to Manchester to become a class teacher and maths lead in a wonderful local school.
Why did you become a teacher?
I suppose there are a couple of reasons why I was drawn towards teaching really. Firstly, my mum worked in education and is a great role model (along with my dad, of course!) Every night there was a book or a story and on days out we’d constantly be learning about things, like how fossils were formed or how to read maps. It just made learning fun! Also, my primary school was a big influence in my choice of career. When I was in Year 2, my parents weren’t happy with the quality of education that I was receiving and moved me to another school, which had high levels of social deprivation. Even now, 52% of families who attend there qualify for Pupil Premium support. But it was the best move I ever made – I have such fond memories of passionate teachers and enjoyable teaching and learning experiences. That, for me, is what it’s all about – memorable learning. They encouraged every single pupil to aim high to fulfil their potential whether it be in sports, arts or in the traditional academic subjects. I passed my 11+ and went on to work hard at grammar school and achieve my goals.
How do you approach your role as a teacher and tutor?
For me, they key aim is to build relationships. As a teacher, once you’ve established that rapport, you can focus on a learning style that will maximise the potential of that child. From the child’s perspective, I would hope that they feel confident to explore their learning and challenge themselves, but at the same time feel safe to make mistakes. I believe that nurturing the critical skills of resilience and a growth mindset enables children to become life-long learners.
Away from the classroom what do you enjoy doing?
I absolutely love anything to do with geography, including travelling and discovering new places. It might sound a bit sad, but I could sat curled up all day reading map books and travel books! Music is another passion of mine. I play the piano and enjoy listening to anything by my favourite composers: Einaudi and Tchaikovsky. The majority of my time though, is spent with my family. My two boys, Jacob and Ben, keep me very busy – we love baking, making things and all things Eurovision. I try to play football with them but I always end up in goal as they know they can score easily (a bit like my favourite team, Liverpool)!
Who are you supporting in your role as associate tutor?
I mainly work with KS2 children providing support for maths, English and 11+ but I have also supported groups in KS1.
To explore learning options with Jo, please enquire via email: