"I don't think I'll ever tire of psychology; the day I do will be the day I retire from teaching!" The voice of Rosie Hussain, teacher at Macmillan Academy, bursts with enthusiasm as she launches into an explanation about her role as head of psychology and her work with students.
"I am really passionate about the subject and find it fascinating to explore what makes people think and behave in the ways they do. I love finding out what makes people tick!" After a brief career as an accounts manager for a telecoms company, Rosie quickly realised how much she missed psychology. Having already completed her degree, Rosie left her job to undertake a post-graduate course in teaching before gaining qualified teacher status through the graduate teacher programme at Macmillan, which she describes as a "unique opportunity". Rosie joined the academy 12 years ago and was appointed head of department in 2009. Since then, the department has gone from strength to strength. She attributes some of this success to her department's very strong subject knowledge and also to her role as an examiner which she feels has given her "a real gauge on where the emphasis lies for assessment" and the ability to "prepare students thoroughly for all the different units".
Recently, Rosie has shared her expertise by leading training on data analysis and differentiation. Psychology is one of the academy's most popular A-level courses and it's not difficult to see why. Rosie's personality and sense of humour are embedded into her teaching style and students are offered a creative, fun environment in which to learn.
Known by students as her "Jackanories", Rosie often uses real-life examples to help them unravel meaning and as a married mum of three, Rosie is not often short of anecdotes.
"I'm quite happy to give students a little bit of 'me' by saying 'this is what's happened in my life', and then linking it to theory." It's clear to see that Rosie's openness and warmth goes down well with students, for whom she is also a highly valued personal tutor, something which has been mutually beneficial. "It works well as I am able to support with university applications and with pastoral issues. I also enjoy getting involved with the social events like organising our annual multi-cultural mela and running a variety of clubs including Zumba, 'curry club' and knitting." It is clear that Rosie loves her job. She describes the best thing about it as "the students" followed by the fact that "no year is ever the same".
She explains: "Every year I look forward to meeting the different characters that come through my door: The differing dynamics of each class makes the delivery of the subject so much more interesting. …