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Catching up with... Eileen Pounder

We catch up with Eileen Pounder, a special needs teacher who lives in North Lincolnshire. Eileen officially retired three years ago after 36 years' teaching, but still teaches on a voluntary basis.

When were you at Kingston and what did you study?

I took a one-year postgraduate course which focused on assessing children with specific learning difficulties, and I graduated in 1994.

Why did you choose Kingston?

I was working as a primary school teacher for the local council, but I must admit I was a bit daunted by the prospect of going back to study and writing essays after teaching for almost 30 years! I needn't have worried - everyone gave me terrific support, and I never regretted taking the course.

Sum up your memories of your time at Kingston in three words.

Enjoyable learning opportunity.

What did you expect to do after graduating, and are you doing it?

I was already working as a teacher, so I continued to do that as I expected, but I gained a great deal of knowledge on the course which I could put into action at school. This also included how to support parents of children with specific learning difficulties, in addition to helping and supporting the children themselves.

What's your greatest achievement?

Working with children. I've always loved it, and it has brought me great joy, especially as I don't have children of my own.

What advice would you give your 18-year-old self?

Grasp every learning opportunity with both hands. Always be ready to learn something new in life, and to take on every challenge you're presented with.

What last made you laugh?

The comments children make. I teach two boys voluntarily and they often make me smile. The other day one of them asked me if I'd still be teaching him when he was 21! During my years of teaching I heard so many things that have made me laugh.

What's your ideal weekend?

We recently bought a static caravan in Northumberland, so I'd get up there, get my boots on and go walking.

You're going to be stranded on a desert island:

What do you take?
Johnny Depp. No explanation required!

Which food, and why?
A never-ending supply of chocolate.

Which movie?
Two – The King's Speech, because I love the relationship and support between the two men. And one of the Pirates of the Caribbean series. Why? Johnny Depp, of course!

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