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Juggling exam marking with a newborn?

Discussion in 'Pregnancy' started by laramesoudi, Feb 19, 2017.

  1. laramesoudi

    laramesoudi New commenter

    Hi there,
    I just wondered if anyone has done exam marking with a newborn? I've just had my contract through to mark this summer, (I have marked previously) and can't decide what to do. My baby will only be around 4-6 weeks old when I start and I'm a first time mum. I doubt I'll be in a routine yet so I don't know whether I'm setting myself up for added stress?! Am I setting myself an impossible task or is it possible to mark between feeds, whilst they're sleeping etc? Any advice from anyone who's attempted this would be greatly appreciated!
    Thanks
     
  2. Mazod

    Mazod Occasional commenter

    Honestly? Don't do it. It's a really bad idea. I had my first baby in June 2016 and was due to mark but withdrew beforehand.

    You have no idea how you will feel physically for starters. I had a trouble free pregnancy then right at the end needed an emergency section and felt pretty rotten for the first two weeks as my body recovered. I've had friends who had to spend a week or more in hospital afterwards. You need to give yourself a proper chance to recover.

    Also, the chances are that you won't be getting much (maybe any!) sleep! Those first few weeks are beautiful but also the toughest. Give yourself a chance to get to know your baby without piling on any more pressure. enjoy those precious first few weeks when they arrive.
     
  3. harsh-but-fair

    harsh-but-fair Star commenter

    It is just wrong to juggle a newborn baby,
     
    sabrinakat and dunnocks like this.
  4. laramesoudi

    laramesoudi New commenter

    Thanks Mazod - everything you've said makes sense! I was really tempted as it's extra cash and more experience of marking but the more I think about it, why am I adding extra stress to what will already be an uncertain time!
     
  5. ellephantf

    ellephantf New commenter

    Hehe when I got my email, I did have a funny five minutes when I thought hmm, well if the babies don't come until 37 weeks (expecting twins) and I am on mat leave then I could just about fit in the marking! Then I thought...hmm, maybe I will be a little distracted and fed up by then! Hope all goes well with your pregnancy and birth x
     
  6. dunnocks

    dunnocks Star commenter

    Don't do it, you have no idea if you will have a sleeper or a non sleeper, or a non-put-downable baby!

    These precious months need to be kept special, even if you have an easy baby, don't take on something that will detract from your enjoyment of the first time...

    ( or make things worse if you are struggling- and there is no way to guess in advance which it will be)
     
  7. mtptproject

    mtptproject New commenter

    Hello - a completely different perspective. I exam marked with a small baby and whilst I found it stressful, it was great for my teaching practice and there's not much pressure to fulfil your quota if you're clearly not going to make it. I'm marking again on my second maternity leave and looking forward to it.
     
    pgcegrad2010 likes this.
  8. EmiW

    EmiW New commenter

    I'm in Scotland so may have a different set up but I agree with others who are saying no. 4 - 6 weeks is very young and you just don't know how you're going to find things. I've made the same decision this year not to do it - partly because I don't fancy doing it with a newborn, but also because we have a face to face markers meeting at the beginning of the exam period so I couldn't attend that anyway.
    Regarding there not being pressure to fulfil your quota - if we knowingly accept marking knowing that we probably won't be able to finish it, that can have an impact on what we're offered in future years.
     
  9. frustum

    frustum Star commenter

    I dont know how exam-marking contracts work, but it might be worth talking to them about the fact that you effectively want to take maternity leave from doing it this year. If you just say no this year, they might then not offer you any next year, but if they know that the reason is maternity, then they would probably need to avoid discrimination on grounds of maternity.
     

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