I have been a senior lecturer at SHU for the past eight years. In that time I have been a subject tutor across BA and PG courses, supported students in the role of ULT in many schools and have led the BA in Teaching and Learning course for the past four years.
I currently work for Sheffield Hallam University as a Senior Lecturer in Primary English. In this role, I teach students from level 4-6, as part of the BA and PG degree courses. For the past five years I have also taught on the BATL course, which involves me teaching English seminars and organising the professional practice element of the course.
Since 2011 I have taken on the role of Year 1 leader for the BA in Teaching and Learning course which has proved to be both challenging and fulfilling.
As a smaller cohort of teaching assistants with varying areas of expertise, the work is very interesting and I enjoy getting to know each student well, as both their tutor and link with the wider university opportunities.
Since 2014, I have taken on the role of course leader, which has been an exciting transition having worked closely with the previous course leader so I can now take that experience and extend and develop those ideas across the course in-line with other BA and PG practices.
Throughout my time at SHU, I have taught on all undergraduate courses, as well as the post graduate course, the diversity of which I find very exciting.
Before working at Sheffield Hallam, I was a primary school teacher. A significant part of my job was to lead the development of Literacy. It was my job to develop this subject and encourage creativity and to build confidence in teachers as to the style and requirements of each genre being taught. I developed this role through my work on my master’s degree, and relevant courses through the National College.
This school-based project meant that I led a series of staff meetings over the next two years to enthuse the staff and offer advice and strategies which could guide both the children and teachers alike through the necessary elements of each genre. This proved to be very successful and the confidence, skills and grades of the children across the school increased.
Primary education in all areas, particularly in English. My particular interest is in reading and writing practices in KS2.
My interest in research is currently developing as part of my weekly work in a local primary school focusing on the reading practices of primary children, particularly the more able and confident readers. For the last four years, this has involved me working in school for half a day per week, focusing on children's reading skills in relation to their developing 'comprehension' skills and the way in which this links with their potential story-telling abilities.
This is research I aim to develop as part of a small scale research, but is something I aim to develop on a larger scale in the future. In June 2011 I was fortunate enough to be involved in a group presentation at the Annual UKLA conference, where we shared some of our research findings thus far with a range of teachers and academics with an interest in Literacy as part of the English team's study into students' literate identities. I hope to continue with this line of study in the future, and with other research projects.
During our most recent mock OFSTED inspection in Hallam University (2013), I was observed as a representative of the training experiences carried out with our students, and this was commented on as being ‘outstanding’. In our previous inspection I worked alongside the English team to share our work in both university, school and our team research.
I have been course leader for the BA in Teaching and Learning top-up degree since 2014. This has built on my experience and duties involved in leader the BATL course, in developing the course materials and its profile as a successful route into teaching for existing teaching assistants.
Within this role I am also module leader for the year 1 core subject module, the Professional Practice module and a year 2 module focusing on exploring professional development through enquiry. My other duties include leading seminars and lectures in Primary English from levels 4-6, including the post-graduate degree course.
I am a ULT in a range of schools across Sheffield and Derbyshire and am academic tutee for a group of BA2 and BA3 trainees.
A paper has recently been published as part of the English team’s research on the factors affecting student teachers’ literate identity. "Investigating student teachers’ presentations of literacy and literacy pedagogy in a complex context" (Burnett, C., Daniels, K, Gray, L. Myers, J. and Sharpe, S. 2015)
Each week, I utilise my study time to work with a local Primary School to focus on reading-related activities. My particular focus of interest is reading comprehension. Through this work, staff and I have a symbiotic relationship in that I can offer suggestions for developments in English, but I also have the opportunity to maintain a current perspective on teaching and assessing in English. During my time I have carried out a number of small-scale studies around my focus on reading, mostly recently focus on children's re-tellings.
As part of the SHU English team, we are currently working with a small group of experienced staff from partnership schools focusing on the subject grammar teaching. Through this study we are investigating the current approaches to teaching grammar alongside our own values and ambitions in teaching English effectively across the Primary setting. This project included presentations being given at the UKLA Bristol conference in 2016 and the SHU Primary and Early Years Conference in 2017. Further development of this work has been continued through publications for UKLA and SAGE.
In 2017, I worked with a SHU P.E. colleague and the director of a sports company to devise Literacy activities which encouraged movement and interaction. The 'iMoves' team worked with us to produce support resources and video guidance of the activities I had devised which are now published on their website. Reviews of this by teachers have proven them to be very successful and increasing in popularity.
Burnett, C., Daniels, K., Gray, L., Myers, J., & Sharpe, S. (2015). Investigating student teachers’ presentations of literacy and literacy pedagogy in a complex context. Teacher Development, 19 (3), 275-293. http://doi.org/10.1080/13664530.2015.1020393
Part of the Language and Literacy research and reading group, work regularly in school to teach and support teachers, predominantly with Literacy-based activities.
For two years I worked with the UKLA executive committee as deputy treasurer which is allowing me to become considerably more involved in the organisation and in networking with key contacts in the teaching of English in schools and universities.