1. This site uses cookies. By continuing to use this site, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. Learn More.
  2. Hi Guest, welcome to the TES Community!

    Connect with like-minded professionals and have your say on the issues that matter to you.

    Don't forget to look at the how to guide.

    Dismiss Notice

Can I teach without my voice?

Discussion in 'Health and wellbeing' started by sensei123, Sep 14, 2011.

  1. I'm losing my voice but don't want to take time off, especially when I'm still settling my new class.
    I only need to teach 2 lessons tommorrow, and I'm wondering whether I can teach without talking?
    Written instructions only, or HA child to read out the questions?
    I have a TA who will be able to take the register, etc.
    Has anyone had success doing this or am I kidding myself?

     
  2. I'm losing my voice but don't want to take time off, especially when I'm still settling my new class.
    I only need to teach 2 lessons tommorrow, and I'm wondering whether I can teach without talking?
    Written instructions only, or HA child to read out the questions?
    I have a TA who will be able to take the register, etc.
    Has anyone had success doing this or am I kidding myself?

     
  3. Eva_Smith

    Eva_Smith Established commenter

    I tried it once and quickly regretted it. I'm sure PFF will be along shortly to emphatically tell you to stay at home.
     

  4. I'm here Eva!!!

    NO NO NO NO NO NO NO
    Have I made it clear enough?
     
    Sci-Guy likes this.
  5. Thank you for the advice. I don't want to take time off as I don't feel really ill (more just full of cold, with a little cough, and very croaky) but I'm also not sure how I will manage a lively class of 30 with no voice!
     
  6. You could end up doing yourself some very serious long term damage. It just isn't worth it at all.
     
  7. lucyrose50

    lucyrose50 New commenter

    I was in the same situation as you just before Oct half term of my NQT year. Didn't want to take time off so soon into a new job, etc etc, so kept going in and miming "
     
  8. lucyrose50

    lucyrose50 New commenter

    (sorry, pressed post by accident...)
    So yeah, I kept going in and miming "I'VE LOST MY VOICE, WE'RE WATCHING A DVD TODAY" which obviously pleased the kids (seriously though, they were actually really great to me, they helped me out as much as they could which I hadn't expected, being a few weeks into a new job in quite a tough school) but inevitably I ended up trying to talk. I ended up unable to make any sound at all for nearly 2 weeks and got massively told off by my doctor when I eventually went to see her. It'd have been better to take a couple of days off in the first place...
    Having said that though, for the first 3 years I was teaching I lost my voice entirely at least once a term and gave up having time off for it because it was getting ridiculous - but I was REALLY disciplined with myself and didn't talk at all. I'd basically put everything on powerpoints and make a bit of a game out of it for the kids - it was a challenge for them to see if they could understand everything I wanted them to do without me having to speak to them and my lessons were often much more successful than when I could talk! It actually brought it home to me that sometimes quiet teaching is much more effective, which I'd been told but hadn't thought it was possible with my very noisy kids.
    Things that help lost voices:
    Lemon & ginger tea with honey in it - made as strong as possible
    Pineapple juice (apparently it has helpful enzymes??)
    Steam inhalation - hot water in a sink, lean over it with a towel on your head. If you can add some kind of menthol essential oil, all the better.
    Someone told me that the following vile-sounding concoction is good - a tablespoon each of cider vinegar and honey and a teaspoon of cayenne pepper, topped up with hot water. I did try this once and it wasn't as disgusting as it sounds, and it did feel like it was doing some good, but I was desperate so perhaps try the other things first [​IMG]
    Good luck!
     
  9. Thanks for the advice. Off to make a hot honey drink and get an early night. I'll have to see how the voice is in the morning...
     
  10. You shouldn't really teach without a voice as you will end up straining it more (whispering is one of the most stresseful things for your voice). When I did my GTP my mentor recommended keeping some pastilles called 'vocalzone' in the car and sucking them on the way home (they taste vile!). Also to protect your voice long term consider some singing lessons to help you project better.
     
  11. chicabonita

    chicabonita New commenter

    I'm not disputing this at all but I'm intrigued to know why. Does anyone know?
    Hope OP finds their voice soon!
     
  12. Whispering comes from the throat instead of the diaphragm. To whisper you have to force your throat to do all the hard work.
     
  13. sleepyhead

    sleepyhead New commenter

    Not a great idea. What yor mentor should have advised was that you learned how to use your voice properly, and to stay off work when you couldn't.
    If you have no or a weak voice, just stop trying to use it. I am absolutely unequivocal on that. You get one set of vocal cords and one only. If you do permanent damage, that could well be the end of your career. How do I know? Because I lost my voice for 6 months and has this very conversation with my consultant. It's not a thing to mess with.
     
  14. lindenlea

    lindenlea Star commenter

    Definitely recommend the steam cure. That and loads of water to drink.
     
  15. Sorry, I didn't explain that properly. He meant to suck them every day on the way home from work as a preventative measure, not to use them if my throat was sore. His wife was an opera singer and used them after a performance.
     
  16. Thanks for all the advice.
    Voice still limited - have now been signed off work for a week by dr. In the mean time drinking lots of fluids, and resting.
    Trying not to worry about work but finding it very difficult as I feel like I'm letting everyone down.
     
  17. Chatterbox1607

    Chatterbox1607 New commenter

    Does ice cream help a sore throat? I am in the same boat...I have not been well for a week now and voice is not getting any better :(
     
  18. Did he say what it is?

    You can also try gargling soluble paracetamol every couple of hours, works if its the back of the throat area that's sore but obviously won't do much for the vocal folds. I'd also recommend steaming and drinking lemon tea with a drop of honey in it if the steaming dries you out a bit.
     
  19. No, dairy won't help, try to avoid it, along with caffiene and booze.
     
  20. cupofteacher

    cupofteacher New commenter

    I made the fatal error of teaching this week when I knew my voice was going....by the end of the day it had gone completely, I was stressed and wished I'd just stayed at home!! now off ill, haven't been signed off but I won't be going back until I'm better, doc reckons Monday.
    Fingers Crossed! (I'm an NQT and really really did not want to appear 'weak' or 'not coping'.)
     

Share This Page