Eruera Abraham (Ngāti Kahu) Bachelor of Education (Teaching) Primary
A decision to follow his passion and do a job that he valued led Eruera Abraham to choose primary teaching after a successful career in the retail sector.
“I spent many years working in the supermarket business, in the hopes of owning my own supermarket. After many years I realised I wasn’t truly happy, and even owning my own supermarket wouldn’t change that. I believe that having a career is not just about money or something that you settle for, but since it’s an area of your life that you will spend most of your time and energy, it should be something that you love to do and are passionate about.
“My mother-in-law works with children, and after seeing what she does, I was inspired to work with children myself. I decided to observe teaching at a number of primary schools before applying for the course.
“Every day is different when teaching — it is a very rewarding experience, you feel a sense of value for what you are doing, you are making a difference, and you are having a direct impact on children’s lives and the community."
"I found that staff were extremely helpful if I needed any assistance or advice regarding my study or practicum. This had a positive impact on my study, my grades, and my confidence."
“I chose to study at University of Auckland because of its positive reputation. When asking former students I received nothing but positive feedback. The option of being able to study at different campuses across Auckland is great. Having a campus in South Auckland, close to home, meant I could spend less time in traffic and more time with my family.
“Staff at the University of Auckland were so friendly and approachable. This was important to me as it had been several years since I last studied. I found that staff were extremely helpful if I needed any assistance or advice regarding my study or practicum. This had a positive impact on my study, my grades, and my confidence. Students and staff became more like a family, and even after finishing the programme we all still keep in touch as a support network.
“As a student, you are given the opportunity to do plenty of hands-on teaching during practicums, within a range of different schools, deciles and year levels. So, by the time I graduated, I was fully prepared and confident to take on my own classroom as a Beginner Teacher.
“Before coming into this programme, I was unaware of all the different aspects of being an effective teacher. Developing positive relationships is definitely an important one, not just with students, but also parents and other teachers. There was plenty of opportunity to use my own creativity planning for children’s learning in fun and unique ways.
“I am now employed at a primary school teaching a Year 3 and 4 composite class. After making a good impression at my last practicum, I was offered a job at the school. I was able to start working straight away as a teacher assistant for a couple of months before taking control of my own classroom. This made it a smooth transition from student to Beginner Teacher.
“If you have had no previous experience in working in a school, like myself, I strongly recommend you contact schools to observe for a day or two. I observed at three different schools before applying for this programme. This will help you decide whether teaching is for you.
“If you are not straight out of school or have not studied for a long period of time, don’t let that discourage you. I graduated school more than 15 years ago, began studying at University of Auckland 3 years ago, and I became one of the top students in my class. University of Auckland provides plenty of on-campus support in all areas of your learning.
“I plan to spend some time teaching, before going back to university to do some further study that will support areas of my teaching that I believe need improvement, or areas that I may become more interested in.”
Eruera Abraham won a Senior Scholar award in 2019 as one of the highest achieving graduates in Education and Social Work.