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Primary (5-11)
teacher training

Course code 


Course length
11 months

Course fee

Course applications run from October through the portal. Find us by searching NIoT@North East SCITT (L06)

Why teaching primary is important

For the vast majority of primary teachers, you are the main teacher for your class and will be with them all day every day. Primary teachers can teach young children from the ages of five through to the age of eleven. 


As a primary classroom practitioner, you will be expected to teach all of the National Curriculum subjects as well as providing pastoral guidance and support with the social, emotional, intellectual, physical, and moral development of the pupils in your class.

It is such an exciting time, and every day is different! For example, you could be teaching about fractions and amounts in mathematics, moving swiftly onto modelling the use of fronted adverbials in English, to then investigating the polar regions and the effects of global warming in geography on the afternoon.

Teaching primary children is such a privilege and responsibility. We are given the task of developing those effective relationships with children’s first educators (their parents), igniting, and instilling a love of learning to establishing the building blocks of learning through classroom routines ensuring our children are secondary ready for comprehensive school. Whilst endeavouring, our children develop respectful attitudes, are culturally aware and become model citizens for the society we live in.

The qualities that make an outstanding primary teacher

To become a high quality successful primary teacher you need:

  • To have high aspirations and want the best for every child you work with as they only get one chance at education!

  • To be a reflective and an adaptive practitioner as each child is a unique individual.

  • To be flexible and be able to think on your feet as a primary school is a ‘live’ place and things can change at a fast pace.

  • A deep understanding of the subjects and curriculum which they teach. As such, you need to be driven to improve your subject knowledge, engage in pertinent educational research and model life-long-learning.

  • An engaging classroom presence.

  • To be committed, enthusiastic and passionate.

  • Great communication skills and be organised

  • Empathy, caring and patience

Subject knowledge needed to teach primary 

Prior to starting the course, you will have access to a reading list of both core and subject-specific books which you will access during your training year. As part of our interview process candidates are asked to complete a subject knowledge audit. This can be used by the trainee before starting the course, not only to develop subject knowledge in key areas of the primary curriculum, but also to build upon this knowledge throughout the training year.


Researching the National Curriculum for Key Stage 1 & 2 and Development Matters (non-statutory curriculum guidance for the early years’ foundation stage) can also be most helpful. We also ask our new trainees to sign up with subject specific organisations and leading educationalists to ensure they are kept fully informed of latest research and developments.

Overview of our primary course


  • Sept: Core training and mini placements 

  • Oct: Subject-specific training, core training and first teaching placement preparation

  • Nov-Dec: First teaching placement (6 weeks) and Newcastle University Teaching Conference (1 week)

  • Jan: Core training, subject-specific training and mini placements

  • Feb: Subject-specific training and second teaching placement preparation

  • Feb-May: Second teaching placement  (11 weeks) 

  • Jun: Personalised mini placement and QTS (qualified teacher status) interview



Ongoing, bespoke subject-specific SCITT Tutor support is provided throughout our programme. Our SEDD (Subject Enhancement and Delivery Days) programme enables trainees to work with outstanding primary subject leaders and teachers in all National Curriculum subjects.


Whilst on teaching placements trainees are supported by expert classroom practitioners and school subject leaders too. Our primary SCITT team have the privilege of supporting you personally every step of the way on your journey to becoming an effective, high-quality Early Career Teacher.


At North East SCITT, your PGCE is awarded by Birmingham University

Our lead school, The Academy at Shotton Hall, is one of only 23 Research Schools in the UK

Complete your initial teacher training year with North East SCITT in just 11 months

We work in partnership with over 60 education providers across the North East

Brush up on your subject knowledge

You may be eligible for a subject knowledge enhancement (SKE) programme before you start your teacher training year. The programmes are available to enhance or refresh subject knowledge. Find out more information here.

Lisa Keech Shotton Hall SCITT trainee case study_edited.jpg

Lisa Keech

Career changer

Read all about Lisa's journey into teaching

What our trainees say about us...

"Fantastic all round training. What has really stood out for me is how supportive the whole SCITT team have been throughout the year. The highlight was my second placement which was excellent and the perfect fit!"

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