Get school experience

You can visit schools to get unpaid experience in the classroom before you start your initial teacher training (ITT).

It can help you:

  • decide if you want to train to be a teacher
  • discover which setting you’d like to teach in (primary or secondary)
  • build a relationship with a school you might want to work for later

What to expect

Your experience will either be in a school or joining classes and meeting teachers online. Placements usually last one or 2 days, but some can last up to 3 weeks.

During your experience, you’ll get to do things like:

  • observe lessons
  • see how teachers manage a classroom
  • find out how specific subjects are taught
  • speak to teachers and interact with pupils
  • learn more about teacher training - including the application and interview process

Find school experience

You can search for and request school experience(opens in new window) in England.

If you can’t find what you’re looking for, you can call a school directly. You can find schools near you(opens in new window) and ask who to talk to about getting school experience.

They may ask you to have a DBS check before attending.

Use our Get school experience service to search for and request experience in England.

Use our service to search for and organise a placement in England.

Other ways to get experience of the classroom

Teaching internships

A paid teaching internship could help you to understand what it’s really like in the classroom if you’re currently doing an undergraduate degree and are interested in teaching:

  • chemistry
  • computing
  • languages
  • maths
  • physics

You’ll get to experience a range of activities to help you get a feel for school life.

Watch pre-recorded lessons

You can observe teachers’ lessons(opens in new window) on the Oak National Academy website to help you get to know teaching better, before or alongside your ITT.

Find out more about teaching

Find out about nearby events, what teaching is really like, and how to get one-to-one support.

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