Meet Mrs Tess Booth ...
Hello Mrs Booth, what's your role at Sompting Abbotts Prep School?
I am the class teacher for PP3 (Year 1 in the state system).
Can you tell us about your educational background?
Yes, I have a BA (Hons) in Drama from Kent University and went on to obtain my PGCE at Brunel University.
How long have you taught at Sompting Abbotts?
This is my tenth year!
What did you do before you joined the school?
Before I went into teaching I worked at the BBC in London. I was based at Bush House, the home of the World Service. There, I harboured ambitions of becoming a broadcaster. I did continuity announcing and worked with producers to organise the recording schedules of programmes. I also worked in personnel for a large American firm in London.
My move into teaching came about because I volunteered to work with a severely autistic little girl and became interested in working with special needs children. However, once my training was completed, I found that I really enjoyed working in mainstream schools. I have taught in several schools in Surrey and Sussex and have taught years from 1 to 6.
How do you find teaching at Sompting Abbotts?
I can honestly say teaching at Sompting Abbotts is the best experience of my professional career as a teacher. The staff are great to work with and we are very supportive of each other.
The physical environment of the school is superb and we have the freedom to use the grounds to enhance the children's learning experience. So, if we are doing work about imaginary pond creatures, we can set off for the pond and indulge the children's imagination. Similarly if we are doing fairy tales, we can head for the woods and bring stories to life.
We get to know the children really well and can cater to their interests. So even in year 1, if we notice a child has a particular apptitude in a subject, we can really run with it and make sure the child's needs are met. We're also not restricted to the confines of the classroom. Children love to be active in their learning and a happy child leads to a happy adult. I am very conscious of how precious childhood is and Sompting Abbotts allows me to provide a range of fun-filled activities!
A really good education at Sompting Abbotts means ...
That a child will learn to explore and develop the tools to grow into well adjusted, capable and caring individual.
Tell us something we don't know about you
I'm a huge fan of the political broadcaster Andrew Neil. He's the best in the business. I also learned how to ski for the first time in my 40s!