The University of Newcastle, Australia

For Master of Education student Kirrily, new has opened up opportunities for her to advance her career – giving her the chance to inspire students through her unique style of teaching.

After holding casual teaching positions in primary and secondary schools for a number of years, Kirrily wanted to take the next step to gaining permanent employment and needed further study to achieve this.

So, she enrolled in the Master of Education at the University of Newcastle and specialised in teacher retraining.

Kirrily’s passion for mathematics and firsthand experience with resistance to old-fashioned teaching styles fuelled her determination to explore new approaches to teaching mathematics.

“I love helping people and trying new things,” said Kirrily.

“I could see that students didn’t understand or enjoy maths in traditional style secondary classrooms.

“I hope to help relieve some of the negativity towards mathematics in schools by slowly changing the way it’s taught,” said Kirrily.

Being able to study online helped the young mum to balance work, study and home life more easily.

“Online study offered me the flexibility to fit study around other obligations – mummy duties and paid employment,” added Kirrily.

And even though Kirrily wasn’t on campus and in the classroom every day, she felt supported throughout her journey.

“The support from the teaching staff was amazing. I was studying online but I didn’t feel alone.

“Without doubt, my most inspiring experience was the lecturer. I was constantly in awe of her mathematical expertise, prompt feedback, explanations, and email support. This has changed the way I teach and the teacher I aspire to become,” said Kirrily.

Now with a permanent teaching position at a local school, Kirrily hopes to make teaching an engaging and inspiring experience for every student in her classroom.

“I see teaching mathematics in a totally different light now. My role as a teacher will hopefully be very different to the way I was taught at school.

“There were certainly some sacrifices that had to be made but now that I have been appointed permanently and I’m working so close to home, it was all worthwhile.”

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Kirrily Furey

Kirrily Furey

Studying her Master of Education gave Kirrily the chance to inspire students through her unique style of teaching.

The support from the teaching staff was amazing. I was studying online but I didn’t feel alone.