We hear from the men and women at the front of the class about what inspired – and continues to inspire – them to take up teaching. Here’s the view from the staff room at Salisbury’s Chafyn Grove


Mrs V (Year 3 teacher)

What motivated you to take up teaching?
The environment – busy, challenging, rewarding. Team work – being key to any school, being part of a community that works together towards the same goal. I chose to work with younger children because they have a zest and energy to learn at every opportunity, which keeps me motivated and passionate about what I do.

What brought you to and keeps you at your school?
The people I work with. It is an incredibly supportive and driven environment in which I work. The people around me make Chafyn what it is. A very caring and hardworking bunch of people that I feel privileged to work alongside.

What is the most rewarding aspect of your job and its biggest challenge?
Making children smile and the enjoyment they get from learning. It is important to always have a sense of fun and humour in teaching so as to engage the children and make memories that they will carry with them through into adulthood.  


Mr W (Senior Master, RS Teacher, Head of Years 7 and 8)

What motivated you to take up teaching?
My parents are both teachers; in fact, my father was the Head of PE throughout my time at my prep and senior school! They imbued in me, among other things, a love of sport so, when I realised that I could train to be a teacher and share with more children that love of sport, I couldn’t think of a better career to follow.

What brought you to and keeps you at your school?
The first time I walked through the gates of Chafyn Grove I was shown around by two Year 7 children. They were fabulously polite but also full of passion about their school. The facilities looked great but what impressed me most was the attitude of these two children towards the school. I met more children and staff as I was guided around and they were all similarly positive and ambitious. I was quickly convinced that this was a place where I would feel at home. Ten years later and I still feel part of a big family. I feel constantly motivated to be a better me, not because of deadlines or threats but because, if I lower my standards, I will be letting down people that I care about…and who care about me.

What is the most rewarding aspect of your job and its biggest challenge?
The most rewarding aspect of teaching is seeing a child grasp a new skill or concept for the first time. It could be something relatively simple, like spelling a tricky word correctly, to something more difficult, like climbing a 30 foot cliff in the Gower in Wales.

The biggest challenge of my job is trying to fit in every topic that I want to cover in the time available. There is so much that I want to share with the children before they leave and move onto pastures new; deciding what is most important as the time ticks away to the end of Year 8 is very difficult: should I spend more time in PSHE on mindfulness or understanding how to manage risk? Should I spend more time in Religious Studies on understanding the 10 Commandments or Jesus’s parables? In PE, should the children spend more time on their forward roll or their front crawl?


Mr W (History Teacher)

What motivated you to take up teaching?
Following a full career in the Army (including many instructional posts) I was keen to continue working in a teaching environment (albeit with much smaller ‘soldiers’!)

What brought you to and keeps you at your school?
The infinite variety of the working day (including learning new skills and facing new challenges). Also the strong sense of teamwork and team spirit which pervades this school (very similar to what I have been used to).

What is the most rewarding aspect of your job and its biggest challenge?
Seeing a child make real and tangible progress in something that they previously could not do or did not understand.  Enjoying the child’s sense of achievement when this happens.  The biggest challenge comes in having time to pause and reflect on such small achievements before the next one!


Mrs R (English Teacher)

What motivated you to take up teaching?
I have always been interested in teaching but was probably influenced by my brother who was a head teacher.

What brought you to and keeps you at your school?
My youngest child was at Chafyn Grove from Year 5-8 and she really loved the school and all the different activities and opportunities she had. When I saw a job for a year three teacher I jumped at the chance because I knew it was a happy and productive school.

What is the most rewarding aspect of your job and its biggest challenge?
Biggest challenges are to vary activities and teaching styles to keep the children engaged and learning. The rewarding aspect is obviously to see the children improve in your subject and engender an interest in your subject.


Mr B (Science Teacher)

What motivated you to take up teaching?
At university, I took a module called ‘presenting science’, about the importance of science literacy in the general public. Something struck rather a chord, and somehow 10 years later it still feels like a good idea!

What brought you to and keeps you at your school?
I was brought here largely by chance. I saw the school needed a science teacher and it looked nice in the advert…

What keeps me is the ludicrous variety of things I manage to get paid to do. Within the space of just a few weeks I’ve done my ‘day-jobs’ teaching science and working in the boarding house, but I’ve also taken cricket teams, dressed up as a medieval archer, taken children away wild camping for a weekend, been a lifeguard in the swimming pool and acted as the giant in a story for pre-prep. The list could go on and on, and being able to do so many different things is a great way of work not feeling much like work.

What is the most rewarding aspect of your job and its biggest challenge?
They are kind of the same thing for me; the children. If you are a teacher, and don’t really enjoy spending your time with young people then you’ve made some spectacularly poor life choices! The challenge and responsibility of making sure that those young people get the support and guidance they need is huge, but it’s those sorts of challenges that are the most rewarding when you meet them.

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