Miriam is listening to each of the boys read, encouraging and guiding them to achieve their best whatever their particular stage on the reading scheme. Meanwhile, the boys are quietly and steadily working on today’s challenge. They have to take this week’s phoneme which is ‘sh’ and find four words containing it, write them down and draw a picture. Next they create their own sentence. Some sentences are very simple, for example ‘This is a ship’, while others are more complex, with a connective, ‘The huge sailing ship sailed on the sea and they caught some fish’
Former Army Officer Miriam Swift trained at Sandhurst and served in Bosnia and Northern Ireland before coming to St Edward’s, the perfect training for someone who needs to keep small boys in order, one might say! ‘I love teaching Year One. My classroom is filled with learning, sharing and laughter every day. The boys are eager to learn. I have the opportunity to impact their lives in a positive way and instil a love of learning; this is a huge privilege.’
Miriam’s energetic and vibrant manner creates an environment that is warm, engaging and infectious in terms of learning. She is encouraging, thoughtful and loves to spark an interest in her young charges, building excitement and getting them thoroughly involved. She feels inspired particularly by her own mother, a real role-model, who always lives life to the full and gave Miriam the belief that she could achieve any goal she set herself. Such a goal might be running the Las Vegas marathon (which Miriam completed in three hours and twenty minutes), coming face to face with a grizzly bear while trekking the Canadian rockies or moving around the world and living in such places as the USA and Cyprus.
There is huge fun in what Miriam does: She painstakingly explains to her class that marshland is not where marshmallows grow! Qualities she values are affection and independence. She certainly gives oodles of affection to the boys and grows independence in them through the tremendous opportunities she offers.