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Does it get better?

Discussion in 'Secondary' started by JDunning, Dec 29, 2010.

  1. My day is similar with zoeeuan - I am a HOD as well as a SENCo (1 / 5 of the 500 pupils) and have 50% teaching timetable and mum to an 11 month old... I promise - it does get easier.

    I also spend half of every holiday working - lesson planning / resources creating and printing these out ready for my lessons. i know what I want the pupils to learn and how, so no matter how off track / fast / slow lessons go my resources are applicable. Peer marking - especially in assessments is a god send. you may also find pupil grades increase because they understand what they are to o and how it will be marked. I mark the lessons that I have that day - that allows me to tick and flick some days, and then be more concentrated on others.

    I always work through breaks and lunches, but see this as a small sacrifice to as I can then leave and be home by 5pm for my baby time. I used to spend every break and lunch also holding detentions from sept until xmas holiday until the kids remember that if they misbehave I will have them back. After that behaviour is not an issue for the rest of the year so i can concentrate on more on teaching. 5 years on I can only count 6 detentions I had this year so far.

    It takes several years to build up a bank of resources, and although photocopying all my resources are against my 21 tasks i really don't mind - and doing it in the holidays means I have the photocopier all to myself for few days - and order the class room again with a to do list so I am bright eyed, bushy tailed and excited to teach what I have prepared.

    For each lesson you have written have a manilla folder on it. Either before or after it have copies of resources used, the lesson plan and power point used. label it clearly and file it. Then the following year you have the basics ready which will need updating and altering but give you a great start and allow you to fine tune your lessons to perfection.

    I also believe in the power of power points whilst I teach to ensure that I reach the all the VAK kids. I also find it helps me keep on a structured track, at a pace and is wonderful for the next year to tweak and use again.

    Long winded essay - sorry! Good luck and keep your chin up. This is a great forum to get resources - help - advise
  2. Sorry about the lack of breaks - On google chrome... I did try to put some in!
  3. Hi, i've just been reading everyone's posts and they're all correct. It will get easier. I'm in my 2nd year of teaching and remember well the 'dark nights of the soul' worrying not just about planning and marking, but all the university theory stuff you have to do too.
    I was working around the same hours as you, but realised quickly i wasn't being productive with my time. E.g. if i had 6 hours to do a task, i would use the 6 hours when actually if i only had 2 hours, i still would have got it done. So What i decided to do is schedule in time for myself. it sounds daft, but it worked. I started going to aerobics and pilates again and having a cinema night (even if i did fall asleep most of the time - i was not working!!!). Seriously though, you can't keep up this pace, you MUST factor time in for YOU, as you will burn out and resent the job altogether.

    Good Luck :)
  4. This is all fantastic advice! Thank you all! As an NQT it fills me with hope too. Boat4boat,I found myself working crazy hours almost till Christmas. It meant I didn't have any 'me' time, I stopped seeing my friends or even really talking to anyone on the phone etc because I 'didn't have time'. However, as all the others have said this is simply not sustainable and will make you utterly miserable and seriously question your choice of career.
    Once I realised all of the above I made a conscious effort to stop working so hard (this took me till mid November as I basically didn't have time to even think about myself!!!). As I was living with my boyfriend till then I would basically start work again as soon as I got home in the hope I would be finished earlier and we could have some time together. Inevitably I would only stop after 10pm so this clearly didn't work. We split up in November and I decided I would come home and chill for a bit after work before doing more lesson planning etc. I soon realised that I got the same amont of work done starting at 9 as I would have from 6!!!!!!
    You could work endlessly in this job but you really don't need to. And it does get easier. I feel so much better and more confident to start this next term. I also plan to get my life back by exercising, seeing my friends a LOT more and doing fun things for me. I'm pretty sure a happy and more relaxed teacher will be a much better teacher than a burnt-out-manic-plugged-into-the-laptop-24/7-lunatic!! It is tough but stick with it. This site is fab for resources - use them!!!
    Try and enter the New Year with a feeling of hope, clarity and realistic expectations for yourself. Good luck!!!
  5. This should be printed out in 72pt Times New Roman and given to every student teacher/NQT. The kids can tell straight away if you're frazzled. The nice ones will take sympathy and work extra hard (which makes you feel about this big ><) and the less nice ones will tear you limb from limb.
    Sometimes it's better to get an early night and be ever so slightly less well prepared, because let's face it, if every single lesson goes exactly according to your (two sides of A4, minute-by-minute) lesson plan, you're hardly an adaptable/interesting teacher anyway!
  6. Oh, and don't feel guilty if you fall behind with the marking. No teacher is ever really on top of it. Some whinge about, others say nothing. There's an assumption that if you say nothing you must have it all done: nope. Just as far behind as the whingers but I don't worry about it. Time management is the key to keeping on top of things. Which is kind of what has been said already. Does it get easier? No, the workload stays the same, how you view the workload changes and makes the job easier.
  7. It has been good reading all these msgs. I am having tough time at the moment and feel like giving up but really do not want to give up teaching. I am an NQT with a really tough class and have not given myself any 'me' time since I started in September. I travel 50mins to work, get there at about 7.30ish and sometimes do not leave until 7pm and then carry on with work when I get home. I really want to have some 'me' time but I am currently not doing well in my NQT year so do not know how to make this possible.
    I just hope I get through the year with a pass!
  8. rjdavispiglet14 -
    Why aren't you doing well? Has your mentor set you specific targets? If you share them, we can try and help!
  9. Do not know why I am not doing well. There is a lot of areas I need to improve upon and I do not know what to focus on first. I was given an action plan little while back and felt like I had made a lot of progress although I realised I still had to work very hard to get where I needed to be. I had my end of term assessment meeting with mentor and HT just before Christmas holidays and it did not go well but I have not had written information back from this as of yet.
    There is a lot going on within my class (including lots of SEN, EAL and behaviour difficulties) and I know it is challenge that I need to meet but I do find it very difficult at times. Some days are ok and other days the whole class seems to be off the wall.

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