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Failing in teaching

Discussion in 'Primary' started by genb, Jun 26, 2019.

  1. genb

    genb New commenter


    I feel I'm massively failing as a teacher. I went back to teaching 3 days a week after finishing maternity leave at the end of February. I am an inexperienced teacher and had only been responsible for a class for 5 months prior to my maternity leave.

    I have been put in a very challenging year 4 class who have had a number of teachers this year. Some teachers have left others refuse to teach them.

    The behaviour in the class is horrendous (chair throwing,angry outbursts, arguments and fights are not uncommon) and disrespect is high (I get called all many of offensive names). Many of the children refuse to listen to me and talk over instruction making it increasingly difficult to teach and I feel the children are not learning. Some of the children tell me they hate me.

    I've tried many different strategies to improve the class but I feel it just keeps getting worse. The stress and anxiety of teaching the class makes me not want to be there.

    Any suggestions on things that may help?
  2. nmason

    nmason New commenter

    It’s hard enough returning after maternity leave, let alone being placed in your situation! Firstly, you are not failing, the SLT is, what are they doing to support you and rectify this situation? Are you working closely with your job share to insure continuity and communications are clear? X
  3. sooooexcited

    sooooexcited Occasional commenter

    Speak to your NQT mentor for support.
  4. genb

    genb New commenter

    sooooex ited - I'm actually a fully qualified teacher but just had no overall classroom responsibility as an nqt - I shadowed and covered classes. Not sure why that school employed me really.

    nmason - Thanks for your supportive words. Unfortunately I really do feel I am failing.

    My jobshare is currently the deputy head who is lovely and has offered a lot of advice and we try to sync routines but none of it seems to be working.

    SLT offer some support but I'm not sure the school behaviour policy is really adequate for those really disruptive. I yellow card those that have been very disruptive so they need to spend time outside the class but they frequently refuse to go and before you know it a lesson has been ruined by that pupil shouting and running around the classroom and refusing to leave.
    Supplylady likes this.
  5. phatsals

    phatsals Established commenter

    Your school needs a sound behaviour policy. An idea would be a red card to HT or other available person when highly disruptive behaviour starts, taken by a trusted child. Said person comes and removes the child from the room. Parents are called and HT becomes responsible. There are therefore consequences for unacceptable behaviour.

    As things stand it's dependent on the child co-operating, if they feel like it, and leaving the room. They know they don't have to so don't - no consequences The net result is loss of control for you and lack of learning for the rest of the class.

    Sorry, but this is a whole school issue, not yours alone. They need to get hold of some behaviour policies from other school to copy and implement. If any of those children have SEN then provision and support needs to be put in place as a matter of urgency.
    Supplylady likes this.
  6. genb

    genb New commenter

    I agree there needs to be more follow up on those that receive yellow card sanctions. Cards to the office are sent with a trusted child but by the time someone comes to get the disruptive child and they have left the room with them we could have lost half a hour of time and then the test of the class have lost it too. It's too unsettling for the rest. The child is back in the class in an hour and often they seem to have had a lovely time with extra attention and often lots of reward in their time out.

    Many of the children in my class are challenging and extra adult support (e.g. a TA all day) has been asked for by me and others before me but to no avail.

    I'm thankful it's nearly the end of the school year at least but of course this behaviour impacts on their data hugely which is especially worrying at the end of the school year.
    Supplylady likes this.
  7. caterpillartobutterfly

    caterpillartobutterfly Star commenter

    Do the class behave the same way for the DH on their days?
    If so, you haven't a hope of changing it.
    If not, then ask them to come in and work with you some of the time on your days. Part of their role as DH is to support staff, so they should be able to do this.

    You have had them for 3 days a week since Feb. Their data is absolutely not your responsibility or fault.

    Just could the days...and look ahead to a nicer class in September.
  8. genb

    genb New commenter

    Yeah I'm certainly counting the days down and looking to starting afresh in a new year class in September. Was just hoping to make the last bit more bearable and I feel guilty for not doing a better job.

    I'm getting pressure about their data so it's weighing on me. Despite the behaviour issues there has been some steady progress just not enough to make up for their disruptive year.

    They behave better for the DH, although not perfect. To be fair to him he has been very supportive with suggesting ideas and strategies. I've observed him and he has observed me teaching them and got the approval of the teaching being fine but they behave very different when he or HT are in the class.
  9. sunshineneeded

    sunshineneeded Star commenter

    I feel for you, genb. I'm at the other end of my career and have many years' experience, but I've had more trouble with behaviour management this year than ever before. Please don't take it too personally, it doesn't mean you're failing. Their data is definitely not all down to you so don't feel responsible. Realistically, not much is going to change before the end of term (count the days!) but learn from this. Observe teachers who you think have good 'class control'. What do they do? What is that makes the children ready to listen and learn? Then set your ground rules on day 1 with your new class in September - have rewards, of course, but also have your own sanctions for those who don't do the right thing, and always impose them. You'll get there!
  10. genb

    genb New commenter

    Thank you.
    I do feel I've it's been a huge learning experience and I'm sure going forward it will improve my practice.
    Supplylady likes this.

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