I grew up in the most centrally located city in England called Coventry, which you may have heard of for its famous relentless bombing during ‘The Blitz’ in 1940. The city is roughly four hours away from every coastline in England and my summers were spent happily exploring here, taking in the most wonderful beaches and countryside. The early realisation that more existed outside of my city turned my attention towards the discovery of other countries and I remember dreaming of travelling and working in far-away places from a very young age. I have a natural interest in meeting new people and my desire to discover more about them, their lives and their culture all around the world led me to where I am now.
Teaching for me very much focuses on the holistic child. I have a passion for social, emotional and behavioural development, which is why I have enjoyed teaching in the Foundation Stage so much since it is here that I get to instill these critical, life-long foundations early in children. After graduating from the University of Warwick with a degree in Early Years Education and my certificate in Primary teaching, I spent three years gaining confidence in my teaching in England before moving onto a new opportunity in Belfast, Northern Ireland. Whilst there, I was fortunate enough to gain specific experience in raising the attainment of underachieving students in Year 6 through a government initiative promoting improved Literacy and Numeracy standards for children living in low socio-economic parts of the city.
Supporting children achieving their full potential regardless of their ethnicity and socioeconomic status has always been my motivator in being the most effective teacher I can be and my experience in Belfast gave me a huge sense of achievement. However, my longing for travel and teaching combined still consumed me, but I had no idea where to start looking. It was on a very rainy day during my travels in Chiang Mai that I took the plunge and applied to teach in the United Arab Emirates and by chance (or fate) a late opportunity arose to work with one of the most prestigious schools in the Nord Anglia family. I was fortunate enough to gain a position with BIS Abu Dhabi in July 2017 and here I am three years later. I have taught in FS2 for the duration and this year became responsible for Maths in FS2, a role in which I have proudly been able to demonstrate my passion for this subject whilst also putting my Primary Maths specialism skills into practice.
Being a part of the BIS Abu Dhabi family has taught me many things. I have been fortunate enough to meet not just fantastic colleagues, but friends for life. I have thoroughly enjoyed meeting so many diverse people from all over the world and combining the best of their teaching experiences with mine to provide the best learning experiences for so many children. Learning through play is, and always will be, the most effective pedagogical approach regardless of age or stage, and I am honoured to have had the opportunity to work with such highly-skilled Early Years practitioners throughout my time here.
Being ambitious on both a personal and professional level means that my thirst to improve my knowledge and teaching is never fully quenched. Currently, I am undertaking an MSc in Psychology, which is further helping to support my teaching through a better understanding of how the children are learning. BIS Abu Dhabi is an exciting place to be and each year just gets better and better!
Stacey Perkins, FS2 Teacher