Blog

Are you a supply teacher or teaching assistant looking for some help and advice? If so, you are in the right place. Our blogs offer tips and tricks on everything from classroom management to interview tips and support, along with day in the life case studies from real supply teachers, ECTs and cover supervisors. They also give you an insight into what working for Smile is like, the ways which we support local communities and charities and the training and events that we offer. 

For more good stuff like this, follow us on social media - you can find us on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and LinkedIn. Or pick up the phone and give us a call.

Tips and Tricks - 14-04-2020 - - 0 comments
Guest blog by Suneta Bagri - Know your worth
As supporters of the Every Teacher Matters Project we wanted to share this fantastic blog from Suneta Bagri, in these challenging times self care is more important than ever for
Tips and Tricks - 09-04-2020 - - 0 comments
Have a Cracking Easter!

As Easter is approaching, here are some fun tips for ideas of activities you can do at home. We would love it if you share any pictures of your creations with us.

Support for support workers - 05-04-2020 - - 0 comments
Must have personal qualities of a children's support worker

Our children’s residential recruitment consultant, Jaleesa, gave us the low down on essential qualities and personality traits that she looks for in children’s support workers.

Tips and Tricks - 31-03-2020 - - 1 comments
The power of positive thinking - Suneta Bagri

 

It is a tough and uncertain time for everyone right now. It’s not an easy time for any of us but we have to stay positive. Training the mind is just as important as training the body. So, we asked Suneta Bagri, former headteacher, current wellbeing coach and founder of the Every Teacher Matters project to give us along with all of our lovely school staff some tips and advice on staying positive. 

Tips and Tricks - 31-03-2020 - - 0 comments
Meditation Tips for Beginners

We asked Louise, our resident wellbeing guru (and Compliance Team Leader) to share her tips on meditation with all of our lovely school staff. Here is what she had to say...

Tips and Tricks - 31-03-2020 - - 0 comments
Let's get physical, physical!

While you can't go to the gym right now, there are plenty of things that you can do at home to keep fit - things that won't cost you a penny and that might turn out to be pretty fun.

Tips and Tricks - 25-03-2020 - - 0 comments
Spruce up your LinkedIn

Looking to spruce up your LinkedIn profile, we've got some tips for you. 

Tips and Tricks - 23-03-2020 - - 1 comments
Feeling connected - A Guest Blog by Suneta Bagri

In light of the recent school closures and government advice on social distancing, it’s apparent that we are all feeling a little out of sorts. Which is why we asked Suneta Bagri, former teacher and headteacher turned Health & Wellbeing Champion in Schools and Founder of the Every Teacher Matters Project to offer some suggestions on things that you can do to improve your mental health and wellbeing. 

Tips and Tricks - 23-03-2020 - - 0 comments
Our top tips for improving your wellbeing

Our team have been working from home for the past week now and in that time we have managed to come up with some tips to improve your wellbeing and to stop you from getting cabin fever during the school closures. 

A day in the life - 15-03-2020 - - 0 comments
Becoming a cover supervisor - Shaik Ahmed

Unless you work in education, it’s unlikely you’ll have any idea of what a cover supervisor is. But it’s likely that you may have been taught by a cover supervisor at some point during your time at school.

When Shaik joined us back in March 2018, he wasn’t familiar with the role either but he has gone on to become one of our most valuable cover supervisors. So, who better than to tell you about being a cover supervisor and what it entails?

Tips and Tricks - 15-03-2020 - - 0 comments
5 burning questions about supply teaching answered by a supply teacher

We sat down with Andrew, one of our amazing supply teachers and asked him to answer 5 of your most burning questions about supply teaching. Here is what he had to say...

Tips and Tricks - 11-03-2020 - - 0 comments
Exam Invigilation with Smile

Why do exam invigilation with Smile? This is what our exam invigilators have to say.

Registering with Smile - 09-03-2020 - - 0 comments
How to reach our Cannock office

How to reach our Staffordshire-based Cannock office by car, train and bus.

News - 09-03-2020 - - 0 comments
Our latest APSCo Compliance+ Audit

During our most recent APSCo Compliance+ audit in October 2019, we are very proud to say that we achieved a score of 99%.

Registering with Smile - 09-03-2020 - - 0 comments
Documents you'll need to complete for your Smile registration

Documents that you'll need to bring to your Smile registration.

Registering with Smile - 09-03-2020 - - 0 comments
Your Smile Registration - what to expect

Here is a little more info about what you can expect at each stage of your registration with Smile Education.

Registering with Smile - 02-03-2020 - - 0 comments
How to reach our Birmingham office

To make getting here a little easier we’ve put together some handy directions to our Birmingham-based office.

A day in the life - 25-02-2020 - - 0 comments
From dance teacher to cover supervisor

Louise went from dance teacher to cover supervisor with the help of Smile.

Training and Events - 18-02-2020 - - 0 comments
Smile is on the ball

Last year, we did something a little out of the box… We organised a football tournament for schools around Birmingham and we're doing the same this year too! 

Working at Smile - 14-02-2020 - - 0 comments
10 reasons we love working in education recruitment

Valentine’s Day has us feeling all warm and fuzzy and got us thinking about the many reasons why we love working in education recruitment (nothing to do with it being half-term tomorrow, of course). Anyway, these are the 10 reasons that we love working in education recruitment.

News - 11-02-2020 - - 0 comments
Celebrating International Day of Women and Girls

It's International Day of Women and Girls in Science and to celebrate we thought we’d take a look at some of our favourite and most influential women in science throughout history.

Tips and Tricks - 10-02-2020 - - 0 comments
How to make the most of Safer Internet Day 2020

Tomorrow is Safer Internet Day so, we’ve come up with some ideas to help you celebrate Safer Internet Day in your school or residential setting.

Working at Smile - 06-02-2020 - - 0 comments
It's Time to Talk about mental health

To show our commitment to mental health we took part in Time to Talk Day.

Working at Smile - 28-01-2020 - - 0 comments
Why we love working in Cannock

We recently opened up our new, second office in Cannock and while we’ll always love working in Birmingham, Cannock does hold a special place in our hearts. Here are the reasons why we love working in Cannock.

Working at Smile - 23-01-2020 - - 0 comments
Our Favourite Books

The team shared their favourite books from now and back then in honour of National Reading Day.

Tips and Tricks - 20-01-2020 - - 0 comments
Don't be blue this Blue Monday!

Our tips to help you beat the January Blues.

 

Working at Smile - 16-01-2020 - - 0 comments
Why we love workng in Birmingham

Our head office is based in Birmingham city centre and has been for over 10 years now. As such we’ve really grown to love the place and all it has to offer. These are the 10 reasons why…

Registering with Smile - 15-01-2020 - - 0 comments
What happens next? | Smile Blog

So, you've attended your registration interview with Smile, what happens next?

Working at Smile - 13-01-2020 - - 0 comments
Our Annual Team Holiday

Everyone loves a holiday, right? How about an all-expenses-paid holiday? Well, as an employee of Smile Education that’s exactly what you can expect. 

Tips and Tricks - 05-01-2020 - - 0 comments
New Year, New CV

A New Year is the start of a new beginning and if one of your New Year’s resolutions is to find a new teaching job, we at Smile have some CV tips which are sure to help you score the teaching or teaching support role of your dreams

Tips and Tricks - 05-01-2020 - - 0 comments
Keywords you should be using in your CV

Keywords, buzzwords, whatever you call them, it’s important to include them in your CV. Here are five we think that you should add to your latest CV and we’ve also been kind enough to show you just how to use them too!

News - 02-01-2020 - - 0 comments
2019 - What a Great Year!

2019 is officially over and 2020 has begun but while we are still getting used to writing and/or typing 20 instead of 19, we wanted to take a look back over the past year and more importantly say thank you.

Tips and Tricks - 31-12-2019 - - 0 comments
Top 10 Guided Reading Strategies for Teaching Assistants

As a teaching assistant, you will be required to lead guided reading sessions with individual children and small groups. While this might sound easy, keeping students engaged is easier said than done. But don’t worry, we have picked the brains of the many Teaching Assistants we work with and compiled a list of helpful ideas. Have a look at some of the strategies we’ve suggested.

Support for support workers - 17-12-2019 - - 0 comments
Why become a support worker?

Why become a support worker? Well, ultimately, it’s a rewarding job. Our residential division explains why...

Working at Smile - 17-12-2019 - - 0 comments
Priya's internship with Smile

Priya, a graduate from De Montfort University, talks about what she learnt from her internship with Smile.

Community and Charity Work - 10-12-2019 - - 0 comments
Supporting the homeless at Christmas

We have joined the Bags for Brummies initiative to support the homeless community in Birmingham. The collection is organised by Love Brum, is a Birmingham based charity that engages with and supports local people and businesses to build an even better Birmingham.

Tips and Tricks - 09-12-2019 - - 0 comments
School technicians - what do they do?

School technicians support and assist staff and students by preparing materials and equipment and are involved in practical aspects of lessons. Typically, a school technician will specialise in a certain subject area such as science, IT, or DT.

Working at Smile - 06-12-2019 - - 0 comments
Christmas Jumper Day at Smile

‘Tis the season for Christmas jumper wearing and today we donned our festive knits to help raise money for St. Mary’s Hospice Birmingham.

Tips and Tricks - 02-12-2019 - - 1 comments
5 Tips for Working in Nurseries

Working in a nursery can be a very challenging job but it is important that in that environment and around the little ones you know how to work effectively. Here are 5 quick tips to help you become the best nursery worker you can be.

Working at Smile - 02-12-2019 - - 0 comments
It is beginning to look at lot like Christmas

It's all getting very festive in the Smile office and starting to look and feel like Christmas.

Tips and Tricks - 28-11-2019 - - 1 comments
The role of an exam invigilator

Considering exam invigiluation but not sure what is required? We have the answers you've been looking for.

A day in the life - 24-11-2019 - - 0 comments
A day in the life of Bernie - Smile supply teacher

Bernie is one of our longest-serving (and hardest working) supply teachers and has been with Smile for years! So, if you are working what it's like working for a supply teaching agency or what the job of a supply teacher involves and getting some tips then keep reading.

Tips and Tricks - 24-11-2019 - - 0 comments
The best places for a school trip in Coventry

Our Coventry Education Recruitment Consultant, has been spending a lot of time in Coventry recently, registering teachers and teaching assistants and meeting with schools. During their downtime, he’s been spending some time exploring the lovely city of Coventry and finding out what it has to offer. What they discovered are some really fantastic places that would be perfect for school trips or even a fun family day out. 

Registering with Smile - 19-11-2019 - - 0 comments
Registering with Smile - we will come to you!

Planning on registering with our teaching agency, but can’t make it to our offices? Don’t worry - we’ll come to you. 

Support for support workers - 18-11-2019 - - 0 comments
How to become a support worker

Learn more about what you need to do to become a support worker.

Training and Events - 17-11-2019 - - 0 comments
Smile does cover supervisor training

An insight into our most recent cover supervisor training workshop.

News - 15-11-2019 - - 0 comments
Our CSR Award Win

We are so thrilled to announce that this year we are the winners of the CSR Initiative of the Year award 2019!

A day in the life - 15-11-2019 - - 0 comments
A day in the life of a support worker

Have you ever wondered what a day in the life of a support worker is like? Well, wonder no longer. 

A day in the life - 14-11-2019 - - 0 comments
A day in the life of Smile NQT James

Ever wondered what life is like for an NQT? James tells all.

News - 14-11-2019 - - 0 comments
Smile open a new Cannock Office

We are proud to announce that we have just opened our very own Cannock office! 

Community and Charity Work - 09-11-2019 - - 0 comments
Smile put their best feet forward

Back in June, some of the Smile team walked the Malvern Hills to help to raise money for Alzheimer’s Research UK.

News - 05-11-2019 - - 0 comments
Getting to know the Erdington Schools Collaboration

We sat down with Anna, one of the headteachers from the Erdington Schools Collaboration, to find out more about how the collaboration works. 

 

News - 04-11-2019 - - 0 comments
School support staff - the unsung heroes of education

A shout out to all the caretakers, cleaners, administrators, IT technicians, subject technicians and exam invigilators out there who make our schools better places.

News - 29-10-2019 - - 0 comments
Weigh to go Chrystel!

Teachers inspire us in many ways and primary school teacher, Chrystel is no different. Except it’s not just her lessons that are inspiring children, it’s her astonishing weight loss journey.

News - 27-10-2019 - - 0 comments
Smile launches residential division

We are really proud to have officially launched our residential division

Tips and Tricks - 22-10-2019 - - 0 comments
Could you be a cover supervisor?

Everything you need to know about the role of a cover supervisor.

News - 20-10-2019 - - 0 comments
Smile Survey 2019 - The Results are in...

Each year we ask all of our schools, teachers and support staff for their opinions on Smile and we are pleased to say that we have received some great feedback this year. Here is what they had to say...

Tips and Tricks - 11-10-2019 - - 0 comments
Our NQT Survival Guide

One in seven NQTs who had qualified in 2017 had dropped out by the following year. To help reduce this number, here are some survival tips to pass on to your NQTs to ensure that they make it through the year in one piece!

Working at Smile - 12-09-2019 - - 0 comments
Welcome to the team Laura - our new Director of Leadership

We'd like to give a very warm welcome to Laura, who recently joined us as our Director of Leadership. The role will see Laura work alongside our school supply team and place headteachers and other school leaders in roles across the Midlands.

News - 10-09-2019 - Admin - 0 comments
We've been shortlised for another APSCo award!

We are thrilled to announce that we have been shortlisted for the CSR Initiative of the Year in the APSCo Awards for Excellence 2019.

Tips and Tricks - 12-08-2019 - - 0 comments
How to become a great Science Teacher

Science is complex and at times can be confusing. So, in order for students to retain the information you are teaching, we advise that you make lessons as engaging and hands-on as possible. Doing so will help you bring the subject matter to life and ensure that they remember all about energy or cell biology or whatever you might be teaching!

Tips and Tricks - 12-08-2019 - - 0 comments
What is the difference between primary and secondary teaching?

Teaching is a great and rewarding career where you will have the opportunity to touch the lives of many young people. The biggest decision you have to make, however, is whether you would like to be a primary or secondary teacher, as while they may look similar on paper, in reality, they are very different.

Tips and Tricks - 12-08-2019 - - 0 comments
5 ways to become an even better English Teacher

As an English Teacher, you have a pretty important job as you are the person responsible for teaching children to not only read and write but to learn from their peers and have challenging conversations.

Tips and Tricks - 12-08-2019 - - 0 comments
Tips for new teachers

Doing a teaching degree and set to graduate soon? We bet we can guess that you are feeling a little nervous. Not to worry though, that’s completely normal - we’ve all had first-day jitters!

Tips and Tricks - 12-08-2019 - - 0 comments
Common NQT problems and how to solve them

Your NQT year will be full of new experiences. While some of them will be good, others might be more of a challenge. For example, you’ll get to witness children grasping a complex idea as a result of your teaching. On the other hand, you’ll also be confronted by some, at times, hairpulling (maybe literally) situations. But don’t panic, we have some advice on how to deal with them.

Tips and Tricks - 12-08-2019 - - 0 comments
Your NQT Induction - What to Expect

Your QTS is in the bag and all that stands between you and your full qualification is your NQT induction. So, what’s in store?

Tips and Tricks - 12-08-2019 - - 0 comments
7 ways to support EAL learning in primary

As a teacher, it is important to sometimes place yourself in the students of your students. For example, imagine you are given a task to complete, only to find that it’s been written in Egyptian hieroglyphics that you cannot understand. It’s likely that your confusion would quickly turn to frustration and then to disinterest. Not a nice feeling, right?

Tips and Tricks - 12-08-2019 - - 1 comments
Our 5 Top Tips for Working with Children with SEN

We are very proud to work with some fantastic special educational needs schools and residential homes across the West Midlands, as well as some amazing SEN teachers and support staff. We understand that working with children with special needs can at times be challenging but know that ultimately it’s very rewarding.

Tips and Tricks - 12-08-2019 - - 0 comments
10 Tips for New Teaching Assistants

Taking on a Teaching Assistant role is a great way of getting first-hand classroom experience before you embark on a PGCE. To help rid you of any first day nerves, we’ve put together a list of helpful tips to help prepare you for life in the classroom.

Working at Smile - 12-08-2019 - - 0 comments
Conor's Smile Story

The team at Smile is made up of consultants and compliance admins. While our consultants work hard to find you work, it’s our compliance admins who make sure that you are able to work. Get to know Conor, our Senior Compliance Administrator, a little better and find out what his day is like.

Working at Smile - 12-08-2019 - - 0 comments
Rep-to-Rec - Emma's Story

Emma, our Director, previously worked abroad as a holiday rep before joining Smile. This is her story and why she thinks that those who have repped make great recruitment consultants. 

Working at Smile - 12-08-2019 - - 0 comments
What values does a recruitment agency really have?

Recruitment companies often have a bad reputation but not all of them deserve it. Katy, MD of Smile, talks about the values which Smile has that makes Smile different than the rest.

Working at Smile - 12-08-2019 - - 0 comments
Smile Signs The Time To Change Pledge

We recently signed the Time to Change to show our commitment to mental health in the workplace.

Community and Charity Work - 12-08-2019 - - 0 comments
Smile makes people smile

We have done our bit for the local community by donating 38 advent calendars to Eyeland Optician's collection for the Black Country Food Bank, helping them to beat their current donation record. 

Training and Events - 12-08-2019 - - 0 comments
SEN Cup Success

Last week, we are proud to report that we hosted our third SEN football tournament at Aston Villa. A total of 12 local special needs schools attended and we provided refreshments and trophies for the children who participated in the event.

Tips and Tricks - 12-08-2019 - - 0 comments
Top revision tips to teach your students

No one really likes revising but it is essential for exam success. However, it doesn’t have to be all doom and gloom, in fact, there are ways for you to make revising more interesting and fun. Here are our top revision tips we think that your students should know.

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