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Feeling strained

Discussion in 'Workplace dilemmas' started by Bonnie23, Oct 8, 2016.

  1. caterpillartobutterfly

    caterpillartobutterfly Star commenter

    If you finish work completely at 8.30 and go home to do something utterly unrelated to work, then I'm afraid I think that is more or less par for the course in term-time these days. And more teachers ought to keep work at school and then go home to a different life. Far too many spend hours each evening working in their own homes, doing all kinds of bits that don't need doing.

    Make sure you save everything carefully this year, in order to be able to use it again next year. Then you are already several hours better off each week. As for the marking, stop marking everything so carefully and precisely. Your school's policy is once very 6 lessons or two weeks, so why aren't you following it?

    Teaching is making sure no-one has a fight in every lesson, children learn something in most lessons and marking happens often enough that SLT don't tell you off. It is NOT checking progress happens every two seconds and that books are a Turner award winning art piece in pink and green marking pen!
    DYNAMO67 and emerald52 like this.
  2. scienceteachasghost

    scienceteachasghost Lead commenter

    How long is your commute? Do you manage to get eight hours in bed each night?

    Most schools lock up well before 9pm! (perhaps forcing people to work at home!) Have you tried leaving at a more reasonable time, having tea and a bit of a break (when I used to teach, the 6pm news was sacrosanct, simply because I guaranteed myself a 30 minute break then) before going back to work?

    PS I'm sure I heard of an academy in Yorkshire open 24 hours a day! Did teachers ever literally stay overnight to work and continue into the next day?!
  3. Flere-Imsaho

    Flere-Imsaho Star commenter

    I don't and i think teachers should do everything in their power to stop these ridiculous hours from being normalised.
  4. install

    install Star commenter

    The best marking involves the quickest feedback.If you are not giving feedback during your lessons then change your lessons immediately.

    There is nothing wrong in marking work with the student (s) beside you in class while independent work or peer marking is taking place. I do this on a regular basis and get to see ten students per direct feedback lesson.They love it because I talk through the issues with them and I love it because books are marked and progress happens faster.
    DYNAMO67 and grumpydogwoman like this.
  5. WJClarkson

    WJClarkson Occasional commenter

    Nope. Since they've increased workloads this September, they've extended lockup from 8:30pm to 12 to give us more time to get work done because people like me don't like taking work home.
  6. caterpillartobutterfly

    caterpillartobutterfly Star commenter

    I don't either, but there are a great many teachers who do. I work from about 7.15am - about 6pm, but generally have about 30 mins at lunchtime in the staffroom where I do nothing but mess about being daft. However I now work in a prep school and have way more than 10% PPA.
    Teaching the load the OP does, I can easily imaging working 7am - 8.30pm to get it all done.

    Not saying everyone works those hours, but it isn't unusual. Especially if you want home to be a work free zone.
    grumpydogwoman likes this.
  7. bevdex

    bevdex Star commenter

    Seriously, 12 midnight? Why not suggest you move a bed into the stockroom? On second thought don't - they might say yes!
  8. WJClarkson

    WJClarkson Occasional commenter

    Tell me about it. The new DH has had this glorious idea of having to mark and scan all work in at the end of a lesson and fill out a form detailing the progress each pupil has made. When you're teaching over 100 pupils some days.... Yeah. Let's just say it's not fun. It's only a "trial" until Christmas. This is the chance the new DH has been given by the HT to raise standards. I'm so hoping the scheme fails. I'm ignoring the fact that I've had 3 emails from the DH today asking me where Thursday's and Friday's forms are. I'm ignoring him - no emails this weekend :)
    I'll deal with the mess on Monday.
    bevdex, DYNAMO67 and grumpydogwoman like this.
  9. caterpillartobutterfly

    caterpillartobutterfly Star commenter

    Excellent attitude!
    All my work this weekend is looking out some old holiday pics of various stone circles and so on for geog lessons next week!
    bevdex, install and grumpydogwoman like this.
  10. grumpydogwoman

    grumpydogwoman Star commenter

    I can just visualise it.

    The earnest student. Perusing the comment in the book. Determining to do better next time.

    PurLEEZE! You stand over them and you give them a word of encouragement or constructive criticism. Nothing else is of any use whatsoever. They are kids/teenagers. They don't give a sheet. It's in the moment or it's worth Jack Sheet. Common sense. Psychology. Human nature. Call it what you will.

    But let's not pretend we're doing this for the students. It's pure madness. What my old HT called 'cover your arr.se for OFSTED'.
  11. WJClarkson

    WJClarkson Occasional commenter

    The head said he wouldn't do it himself even if he was paid extra to do it. The scheme has created tension between the head and deputy - the head isn't fully behind the scheme and won't come down hard on those who don't do it. However, I value keeping my job and not falling out of favour with management.
    grumpydogwoman likes this.
  12. caterpillartobutterfly

    caterpillartobutterfly Star commenter

    I remember years ago, really admiring one teacher who had the most beautifully marked books. I lusted after them. I dreamt of maybe, one day, returning such beautifully marked books to my pupils. All those lovely colour coded comments. All those lovely squiggles that meant something or other to her classes, but I wasn't privileged to know what. Ahhh can still picture them now.

    About 15 years later, I still regularly hand back books with "Sorry forgot I said I'd mark these for you. I'm sure they are all fab, so have a housepoint each."

    I just can't be bothered with marking, it's so boring, and my classes always seem to learn and make good or better progress, so it can't be all that important.

    *would still love those beautiful books though...o_O
  13. slingshotsally

    slingshotsally Star commenter

  14. grumpydogwoman

    grumpydogwoman Star commenter

    ...it can't be all that important...
  15. caterpillartobutterfly

    caterpillartobutterfly Star commenter

    LOL That's what I thought too!
    Our school is locked at 6pm, earlier in some blocks if the cleaners think everyone has gone!
    slingshotsally likes this.
  16. phlogiston

    phlogiston Star commenter

    I remember hearing of a predecessor who after domestic difficulties bedded down in a physics prep room. The head was not impressed.
    bevdex and slingshotsally like this.
  17. JaneBennet

    JaneBennet New commenter

    You have lots of good advice here, but could I add one thing? You seem pretty set in your ways, which is understandable - if you're working the hours you are, the idea of leaving at 4.30pm must be terrifying (how could such a thing be possible?!) Instead (and please do this - it worked for me), knock 15 minutes off each day next week. Be strict with yourself. It won't feel easy, as you will, quite simply, have to cut a corner or let something go - that's teaching. Decide now what it will be. A few minutes less on on each essay / daring to tick and flick for one of the younger groups for the first time (I promise, the world won't end!) Stick with your earlier finish for a while, allowing yourself the odd day's exception for when you're really struggling or stressed, and then, when it's feeling more natural, knock another set of 15 minutes off. And keep doing that, until you reach something reasonable. I aim to do 50 hours a week max., 55 at peak times. I'm conscious this is too much, but, boy, is it an improvement on past form, which was similar hours to you. And I've much more responsibility now than I used to, and look back at how I used to mark, for example, in mild horror. You can get there, too!
  18. WJClarkson

    WJClarkson Occasional commenter

  19. thistledoo

    thistledoo Senior commenter

    Imagine your school closes at 5.45 or 6. Go home then. If you must take 1 'small' task with you - nothing else.
    I understand the coursework conundrum, particularly if left in a mess for you to sort out BUT make your LM aware and ask for time off timetable with the class to put it right, call it an exam if you like. You may need several of these 'catch-up' sessions to put past work right.
    From now: Keep all students 'together' on coursework. Time the task. Then ask your HOD/ LM to follow up any that did not stay on task. Ask for help and support now, let your managers know the situation. (And don't be fobbed off by any SLT/ LM that says, 'just do the best you can do'... enlist their help.

    Take lots of the advice given here from OP's - it is tried. tested and works.

    Good Luck to changing your work ethic!
  20. install

    install Star commenter

    If marking were that important we would be given the appropriate time to actually do it in the working day...

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