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A day in the life of a teacher

Discussion in 'Workplace dilemmas' started by arl17, Sep 15, 2019.

  1. sparklepig2002

    sparklepig2002 Star commenter

    I'm retired now but my last job, in an infant school, was
    Alarm at 7
    Leave at 8
    At work by 8.15(an advantage of living near my school)
    45 mins to set up and do any admin
    Teach 9-10.30
    Coffee break for 15 mins
    Teach 10.45-12.15pm
    club until 12.45
    45 mins lunch break
    Teach 1.30-2.45
    30 mins for clearing up
    Leave anytime after 3.30pm
    Back home by 4pm at the latest.
    Plan for the following week.
    Not all jobs are carp!
    I was very lucky.:)
  2. gilderbeast2000

    gilderbeast2000 New commenter

    You guys all need to make more efficient use of your time. Stop marking in the evenings and at weekends! Peer assessment and verbal feedback are options. Your students learn during your lessons. Time spent marking and writing feedback will be ignored or not even read by many students, so you are wasting your time. Offer class feedback as a whole with general points of how to improve. Marking hundreds of books in the evening or at weekends is ridiculous.

    Finish work and start work as per the times stated in your contract. Therefore your working week should be about 40 to 45 hours. If you are working longer than that, its your own fault!

    Also, having worked in Uk schools for many years I've noticed that UK teachers seem to have a real fear of SLT and authority. I struggle to understand this, probably as I not British and come from a country with a history of not being afraid of authority! At meetings I often state the obvious but I am met by silence from my colleagues as they are afraid to stand up for themselves. SLT usually only care for their own ambitions and power trips.

    This fear is often evident here on the TES forum too. Teachers need to be more assertive and aware of their rights.
  3. mothorchid

    mothorchid Star commenter

    "Stop marking in the evenings and at weekends! Peer assessment and verbal feedback are options. Your students learn during your lessons. Time spent marking and writing feedback will be ignored or not even read by many students, so you are wasting your time. Offer class feedback as a whole with general points of how to improve."
    Yeah, right. That's going to go down like a cup of cold sick with many SLTs, especially when they are looking to get rid of staff for whatever reason... I'm not saying you're wrong about marking, just that your suggestions won't be acceptable to SLT.
    agathamorse, steely1 and CWadd like this.
  4. bumchuckle

    bumchuckle Occasional commenter

    @lardylady One cat stands on me - surprising how painful this can get after awhile, especially if she manages to stand on my bladder. The little one climbs under the doona a attacks my feet with extended claws, also painful.
    Extrabreaktime and lardylady like this.
  5. Grandsire

    Grandsire Star commenter

    Mine deliberately walks along the pillow, treading on my hair and clawing at it so that it pulls and wakes me up.

    A previous and much-loved cat used to ever-so-gently put his front paw into my open mouth (okay, so I must snore a bit...!). That was weird.

    One less-missed and damaged rescue cat used to savage my arm to wake me up. It happened so often and was so violent people often assumed I self-harmed...
    caress, Extrabreaktime and lardylady like this.
  6. Progressnerd

    Progressnerd Occasional commenter

    In a lot of schools if you speak the truth you get put on a support plan or forced out through intimidation etc.

    Luckily I'm at a school now where staff challenge SLT in a respectful way and they listen and are willing to work with staff. Not all the time but so much more than when I was in the state sector.

    If you took away the ability to put staff on capability quickly and for absolutely ridiculous and spurious reasons then more teachers would stand up and speak out IMO.
  7. CWadd

    CWadd Star commenter

    Umf. I spent two years in a hellish school where getting up at 5.15am everyday and staying at work until nearly 6 wasn't enough for the ***** that ran the place. The HT was and still is a ****, I'm reliably informed. Hopefully the ugly old **** is reading this.

    My weekends were taken up with work, and I actually starting thinking jumping in front of a train was the right option. Now I work in a school where I say "nope, haven't got time," and if people are offended...too bad. I teach my lessons. I mark my books within reason. But I refuse to spend two hours before the day even starts working, and five hours after the kids finish working. Because life is short, and I no longer care.
  8. yoda92

    yoda92 New commenter

    Wow. 1 and a half hours breaks. We get 40 minutes total per day, that's the kids lunchtime. Directed to do break duties almost everyday. Your's does sound a fab job.
  9. Billie73

    Billie73 Occasional commenter

    6:15 - ignore alarm as long as possible
    7:20 - leave for work
    8:30 - arrive at work
    8:30-8:50 - catch up with team, gossip, possibly put on make up if I can be bothered.
    8:50- 12:30 - lessons.
    12:30 - lunch - take the whole hour and leave the building to socialise/exercise with friends
    1:30-3 - lessons
    3 - children leave

    Our directed time ends at different times on different days but I’m home by 5 every day.

    I don’t work in the evenings.
    yoda92 and agathamorse like this.
  10. teapot24

    teapot24 New commenter

    Blimey you all leave for work so soon after getting up.
    5.35 get up, have a brew and a bath.
    6.00 get kids up and showered, hair sorted, breakfast, packed lunches made, have another brew.
    7.15 leave for work
    7.40 arrive at work, sort things out for the day ahead.
    8.30 children come in
    11.45 children go to the hall for lunch. Once all children have their meal and have checked they are eating, go to lunch (12.05 usually)
    12.40 go to playground to collect children
    3.05 children leave. Staff meetings sometimes until 5.30, or if no meeting complete observations, assessments, prepare resources, planning.
    5.00 leave work and collect kids.
    5.50 get home and make dinner, eat dinner and spend time with kids.
    8.00 -8.30 kids go to bed. If I have any last minute bits to do then do them, if not just relax.
    10.30 go to bed
    agathamorse likes this.
  11. livingstone83

    livingstone83 Occasional commenter

    I'll do a two in one, previous and current job.

    I'm pretty well organised with my time, so typing it out like this does bring me some unexpected morning joy - so to speak.

    Previous job;

    5:30am - Bloody alarm. Get up, shower, shave, chose a suit and leave the house.
    5:30-6:00am - Drive to work. Normally listening to Radio 4, or if I'm feeling that I really need some waking up, grab one of the extensive selection of CDs that litter my car. Normally smoke 4 cigarettes.
    6:00am - 6:15am. Wait for the computer to turn on. Drink a cup of coffee whilst waiting. Read the TES forum.
    6:15 - 7:15 - Plan the lessons for the day, get a start on making the resources.
    7:15 - 7:30 - Go for a cigarette behind the kitchens with the cleaners.
    7:30 - 8:00 - Make and print the resources I'll need for the day, including setting up any science experiments (normally at least 2).
    8:00 - 8:15 - Have a read of the TES forums, submitting to my vanity and checking if anyone 'liked' what I posted a couple of hours ago.
    8:15 - 8:30 - Good morning with the rest of the Department, coffee, biscuit, moan about the Tories etc.
    8:30 - 3:15 - Teaching. Any PPA time is undoubtedly meetings with SLT as I had other responsibilities or meetings with members as I was a trade union rep. (Yes, I know - meeting SLT in PPA time is against Union guidelines, but the alternative is either in the morning or after school - and I see that as my time)
    3:15 - 3:30 - meet the cleaners for a cigarette outside the kitchen.
    3:30 - 4:30 - marking books - whatever has been written in todays work.
    4:30 - 5:30 - marking books - responding to what the kids had written.
    5:30 - 6:00 - marking books - responding to the responses of what the kids had written to my responses to their original work.
    6:00 - 6:15 - go for a cigarette - normally on my own this time.
    6:15 - 6:45 - tidy my classroom, wonder where all my pens went and be amazed at how little ink they must put in board markers. Test some science equipment. Watch some science videos on YouTube.
    6:45 - 7:15 - drive home, normally chose a Frank Zappa CD. Smoke about 5 cigarettes. Then it's feed, bath and bed for the kids, a bottle of wine and half a film for me.
    Every other Saturday 9:00am - 2:00pm go to school input data into various spreadsheets concerning my intervention groups, year group, and classes - after either marking or collating tests.

    I'll do current job later. I seem to be out of my current schedule, and therefor allotted time, given to posting on TES.
  12. Jolly_Roger15

    Jolly_Roger15 Star commenter

    Oh! The horror. I remember the time-consuming, pointless agony of 'dialogue marking'. Since most students did not engage in the dialogue, to satisfy the SMT, we were told to write in what comments we thought the students would have made, and then respond to these. Crazy! :(
    Happyregardless and Corvuscorax like this.
  13. Oldfashioned

    Oldfashioned Senior commenter

    6.45 up- get ready and walk the dogs
    7.45 leave for work
    8.00 Arrive at work and mark or prep until 8.45
    8.45 to lunch- 4 lessons with a 20 min break. Usually make sure each class spends 20 to 30 mins independent work and I will mark during that time.
    2 to 3 last lesson
    3.15 (can't leave until then) mark a few books and tidy up desk
    3.15 stroll to car and head home
    3.35 home to licks from the dogs, make a brew, shed work clothes and dress in scruffs.
    4pm walk dogs and then spend evening doing anything from running, cycling to netflix. Work never crosses my mind.
    livingstone83 likes this.
  14. peakster

    peakster Star commenter

    Many teachers couldn't do that - I'm too active in lessons to mark anything.
  15. DexterDexter

    DexterDexter Occasional commenter

    I thought everyone was hanging around rather a lot!!!

    Job I’ve thankfully just left
    Night time- shower, layout complete outfit for the next day, put lunch in fridge (with keys so I don’t forget to take food!)

    6.15 alarm/wash/dress
    6.25 leave for work
    7.05 arrive- read emails, finish marking from previous day, print stuff/worksheets,other paperwork (handing in planning files which I have to print from the whole school system, hole punch and take to the office) open any power points/web pages/examples.
    8.15 discuss students/lessons with TA (godsend) whilst continuing above stuff
    9.00 kids in
    10.30 break. Mark previous lesson. Deep mark making sure every piece of work is “dated, spelt correctly, space, learning objective in full and underlined” before looking at content.
    10.45 lessons- no sneaky marking as we’re in assembly.
    12.00 lunch. Deep mark first and previous lesson.
    12.45 afternoon lessons
    3.20 pupil hometime. Deep mark all books from the day unless staff meeting (supposed to be until 5 but frequently nearer 6.
    6.00 leave as site manager throws everyone out. Anything not done gets left.
    6.45 home, food, stare at the wall, only have the energy for sitting still with slight rocking.
    10.00 bed
    11.30-12.30 wake up angry because of pointless work/nasty comments from those who should know better
    2.00 still seething
    3.00 finally get back to sleep
    6.15 alarm and off we go again :(

    In PPA, medium term plans detailed for every lesson in the half term, weekly English, weekly maths, weekly timetable (all copied and pasted from MTP).

    Don’t mention about shortcuts/peer marking etc. I tried that. “Support” plans aplenty for those “not following school policy”.

    I’m so pleased to be away from there.
  16. caterpillartobutterfly

    caterpillartobutterfly Star commenter

    It is a fab job for lots of reasons.
    I'd have another half hour at lunchtime if I didn't do lunch duty each day.
    However, notice we start at 8.35 and finish at 4.00, so a very long day compared to many on here.

    Independent schools are a whole other world!
  17. Skeoch

    Skeoch Star commenter

    6:15 Up, shower, dress, walk dog; while doing so remember I’m on breakfast duty; curse to myself (dog mustn’t be upset by bad language)
    7:20 Dash out of house, use the car as I’m running late, get into dining hall for 7:30; on a better day I’d have picked some litter or pulled some weeds on the way in, and then got to my desk by 7:45. Next to no-one there yet. Grab a full English and a coffee. Speak with a number of pupils, eventually find the duty prefect and the two duty pupils, check they’ve remembered.
    8:00 Try to encourage the lingerers to leave – need to get some work done before class. Finally supervise final clear-up and go to lab.
    8:30 Some hasty marking done by now, handouts found for first lessons, registration also completed
    8:30 Today we have a meeting for yeargroup tutors so sprint off to that
    09:00 Lessons under way
    11:00 25 minutes for coffee and a home-made biscuit – several conversations about this and that
    11:30 meeting with NQT – all going well but she wants some guidance on a couple of topics and we arrange for her to observe one of SLT – study of timetables makes sure it’ll work.
    Then back into class
    13:00 Getting hungry and my A Level group are as well – not helped by seeing younger year groups going to their earlier lunch; we struggle on for another 10 minutes or so
    13:15 Into lunch – not on duty but the queue is long so I make a dive for soup and a salad which will be quicker as it’s self-service. Chat about anything but school across the lunch table.
    Back to the lab for some more marking, clearing some emails, and discussion about practicals for the rest of the week with the technician. To the staff room for a hurried coffee (it’s better than the coffee in the department) and a comfort break, then registration with some loose ends to clear up with some of the tutor group, then
    14:30 Back in class
    16:00 We’ve finished lessons – glad I brought the car as rapid zoom home to let dog out again and change ready for a DofE session on the climbing wall which finishes around 17:45
    18:00 Home – whoever is home first walks the dog, the other does the cooking; a bit of family time
    Somehow I’ve brought the marking home – need also to look in the planner and see how far ahead I am – is there anything long-range that I need to plan with the technician? Will be teaching a new bit of A Level, so need to bring myself up to speed. And there are still the emails and things to deal with.
    Make coffee – mainly to escape the email. Expect a phone call from the HT around 22:00 – we always chat at this moment in the week so that we can agree the agenda for our big meeting tomorrow; this seems a very uncivilised time of day but it works for us. Write and email the agenda ready for people to read it first thing tomorrow.
    Let dog out; hope to see tail end of the news; bed.
  18. drek

    drek Star commenter

    Unfortunately.........outspoken today.....life made hell forever after, including dishonest references and continued directions to acquaint ourselves or work ‘in line’ with 50 or more different policies, some contradicting each other!

    Some policies want to follow a week on week strategy which might work for primary where it’s the same group all the time, but falls apart at secondary. Where teachers see the same students for varying amounts of time.

    Over a two week period a student will have had 7 to 11 hours of science or maths or English lessons whist they have 2 - 5 hours of other subjects.......depending on the key stage.

    But apparently it’s one size fits all. Which as one can imagine is far more stressful for teachers with more actual teaching hours particularly if they have the bulk of pp, send and haps students assigned to them!

    It’s a lot more data to input, read, a lot more phone calls, meetings, interventions and other never ending stuff per student.
    So this week some teachers in the department will have put in an 8 to 9 day including 5 hours of teaching 5 different groups completely unrelated topics, whilst others put in the same hours but the bulk of their day is not spent teaching.
    Instead their energy is spent on checking whether teachers are adhering to the 50 changed policies they were handed two days before students came in.
    How does unfair workload division help to improve the behaviour of a vast number of students whose behaviour around the school is appalling?
    Zilch nada.....it does however encourage those teachers doing actual teaching work at secondary to leave in droves........ or join leadership programmes which are equalling gruelling but a break from large groups with a gang of unmanageable students, one after another, the only ‘relief’ being email requests adding to the workload.
    Yes it’s that time of the year and I’m already composing a resignation just in case letter........
    agathamorse likes this.
  19. bevdex

    bevdex Star commenter

    Same as Belle! It's wonderful!
  20. poppypiglet

    poppypiglet New commenter

    6am - Get up, feed, muck out and turn out horses.
    6.45am - shower, get dressed, chivvy child to also wash and dress, feed dogs & cat.
    7.30am - leave for work, dropping child at school on the way.
    8.15am - arrive at work, print/photocopy anything I ned for the day, check emails, caffeinate, eat a breakfast bar if I have time.
    8.45am - registration
    9.05 - 11.05 - teach
    11.05-11.20 - break time - re-caffeinate, go to the loo if there's time.
    11.20 - 12.20 - teach
    12.20-1 - lunch - caffeinate again, eat lunch at my desk while responding to emails/inputting data etc.
    1-3 - teach
    3.10pm - leave work, collect child from school at 3.30pm.
    4pm - arrive home, get changed.
    4.15pm - 6.15pm - exercise horses
    6.15pm - cook dinner and eat
    7.15pm - get child sorted and into bed
    7.45pm - walk and feed dogs
    8.45pm - planning/marking etc.
    11pm - bed

    I don't do housework or gardening (employ someone else to do that!), people often wrongly assume I don't work as hard as others because I leave on time but that isn't the case!!

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