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Planning at weekends

Discussion in 'Primary' started by donna79, Apr 25, 2010.

  1. donna79

    donna79 New commenter

    Yet another stressful all day Sunday planning session for the week ahead. Seems to be a regular occurence even after 3 years of teaching. Is this normal? Does anyone else find themselves spending the weekend either thinking about work or actually doing it?
     
  2. I do all my planning in PPA time but do spend Sunday afternoons preparing worksheets and checking I'm sorted for the week ahead. It's taken some practice but I've managed to reduce it to under 2 hours a week now!
     
  3. indigo987

    indigo987 New commenter

    Sadly for me, yes. I have Friday night and Saturday completely off and can usually switch my brain off, but Saturday night I often end up thinking about work and I am such a procrastinator that it takes me most of Sunday to plan for the following week. This is my 4th year teaching, and it has not helped that every year so far I have either changed year groups, or my school has moved to either the new literacy framework/maths framework/creative curriculum. Have hardly been able to ever re use any planning! However, I know that a lot of this is down to me wasting time on the internet, and if I actually knuckled down and just made things instead of seraching for them I'd probably be faster!
     
  4. Sillow

    Sillow Senior commenter

    Yes. I feel quite obsessive about it sometimes. If I'm not planning, I'm thinking or talking about it. I'm sure my partner gets very bored of me.
    I am trying to find a balance, though, for example getting to school earlier and leaving earlier during the week, not working at home in the evenings and only working one morning or afternoon on a weekend. It's tough, though!
     
  5. If im not otherwise occupied, i find myself CONSTANTLY thinking about school, and put far more hours in than are strict necessary just faffing around doing bits and bobs.
    If ive got better things to do though I forget all about it! Just those lazy sundays with nothing better to do normally end up with hours on google looking for ideas or resources.
     
  6. gergil4

    gergil4 New commenter

    Your home life may dictate what you can do and when, but in my child-free days I stayed at school until late on Thursdays when it was used by a community group, and got everything planned then. I had all resources to hand, and could stay as late as I liked - normally around 8pm. This gave me the weekend relatively free. I found a nominated evening really helpful.
     
  7. Ha ha sounds just like me!! [​IMG]
     
  8. Sorry that was meant for indigo!
     
  9. lillipad

    lillipad New commenter

    I've spent most of today doing 5 math lessons for next week.
     
  10. I'm going to buck the trend and say "No". On a day to day basis, I take very little work home with me, including at weekends. I do my planning mostly on a Wed during directed time and in my Thurs ppa. I plan my objectives in numeracy and literacy for the week, and know in rough the activities we do, but don't plan and prepare too far in advance as their needs often dictate a different pace or approach and I try to accomodate that as much as possible.
    It helps that I;ve been teaching the same topics in the same year group for several years, and that we save planning and resources on the common server and can access them easily which saves a lot of preparation time. I also implement lots of time saving techniques when it comes to marking so that I have more of my directed time available for planning. It also helps that my PPA is Thurs morning and I finish Thurs lunch, so I always spend it planning or preparing for the following week,
    I also have a relatively easy - as far as planning is concerned- Monday planned. Double music in the afternoon cuts down on the need for too much prep, for example.

    If I do take anything home to do, it is when there is much more planning to do - e.g. with the change of our science scheme of work there is more to look at, or if I particularly want to revisit and update a particular plan.
    Next year I may be in a different year group, so things may be very different while I get used to a completely new set of topics and plans.
     
  11. I have been teacvhing for 25 years and still spend Sundays and holidays doing school work (or worrying because I am not doing it! I usually take Friday evenings and Saturdays off but have been known to get up at 6 on a Saturday to do a couple of hours if I am really snowed under (like now!) Sad isn't it!
     
  12. I thought that was why we didn't have to go in to school on Sat or Sunday, so we have all that time at home to do the work. Mind you I do have to make sure I am seen in Church on Sunday too so I get my fresh air and sight of the children then.
     
  13. Glad to k now am not the only one - although worrying that people are still doing it after 25 years! I too am in my 3rd year and still take loads of stuff home most nights, a lot of which doens't get done as I'm too tired. I also spend most of Sunday working...or gearing up to work, I can easily spend all day putting it off then spending till midnight working and thus start the week tired and frazzled. I can't seem to get out of this rut and its doing my head in, so much so I am considering whether I want to remain a teacher or not.
    I love the teaching part, and have a lovely class this year, but I really struggle to cope with the workload and all the extra pressures like assessment, IEP's and reports put on us. I don't know why I'm working a 60 hour week when the kids are only in approx 25 hours. I work far longer and harder than I ever did in the office (and compared to a lot of my friends who still do office work and who don't really understand how complex the job is) and am really fed up of having no life, feeling totally stressed and run down all the time. My husband is also fed up of it and wants me to leave so that I will be less stressed, even if it means we have less money. I can't imagine what else I'd do tho. There's so many things we're supposed to do and be good at, it feels totally impossible...and then there's always someone coming along to say you're not doing a good job, this should be better, we should try this new initiative. Why does management only pick out the negatives? You wouldn't do this to a child, so why do they do it to us?!?
    Any tips that anyone has on managing workload and getting things done quicker would be much appreciated. I too spend hours looking for resources...partly because I'm not sure what activities best fit the objective, then I find too many and don't know which to choose.

     
  14. I am in Scotland and doing my probationer year...so glad to hear others in the same boat as myself.
    I will admit that I am an awful procrastinator...(I never used to be before I started teaching and it took over my life.)
    I too look for resources then can't decide which to go for and then end up making something after it all...now to hunt something to teach area by counting squares!
     
  15. OMG! Reading your post is like seeing a mirror image of myself! How true all your points are! Why do we put off work only to stay up way to late getting it all done? I'm a mature NQT - I began work this January. I've got kids - not that I see a great deal of them ... My husband is constantly on at me to be more organised but the workload seems never ending - and as for housework - well that doesn't get a look in! If it carries on like this - me having such a reduced social life - then I'll seriously consider a career doing supply work.
    I'm sorry I have no answer - but take heart that you're not alone.

     
  16. That message was meant for blossomgirl by the way - sorry - I'm new to this sort of thing![​IMG]
     
  17. Unfortunately I think this is probably fairly typical. I've been teaching for over 20 years and continue to find planning a time consuming task. I have tried cutting corners but have found that to do so only results in more stress when I don't feel adequately prepared. I also find that there are very few resources or lesson plans that can be easily reused as things always need tweaking to accommodate the needs of different groups of children. I really like the idea of a dedicated late night to try and overcome the problem of weekend working and think I might give this a try; even after all this time I'm always willing to try new ideas!
     
  18. OMG, I could have written this, indigo987! I too procrastinate and end up worry working most of Sunday! I do make lots of my own stuff as well as trawl the internet but it takes time either way I find! It would be nice to be able to reuse some planning too, I agree...
     
  19. Hi blossomgirl
    60 hours sounds about right, and no, people outside of teaching don't really get the job. I take peverse pleasure in informing parents that for every hour I teach, I spend another 2 hours preparing and marking. To their credit, most of them look suitably shocked.
    Regarding the new initaitives and extra pressures, tell me about it! We've got OFSTED sometime next month and the pressure since September has been horrendous with compulsary training etc. Why the powers that be don't realise the effect this has on staff morale and welfare I don't know.
    You are obviously a dedicated teacher and love the job. Rather than leave the profession, have you considered going part time? I dropped to 80% 3 years ago and it has given me a new lease of life. We don't miss the extra money, my husband has his wife back, I have time to relax and do other things. Best decision I have ever made. There are loads of opportunties to work as many hours as you please. Rather than hold back my career, it has given me more opportunites and experience and I now have a far more varied CV.
    On a day to day basis I try to go in early or stay late (6pm) so that I can get planning and marking done at school. I refuse to cart piles of books home. I have also started leaving my school bag at school during the week to prevent me from working in the evenings (it also makes a statement that I will have a work-life balance). I sometimes look for resources from home. To save me wasting too much time on this I stick to 3 trusted websites and if I can't find what I want on any of those, I either forget it or make it myself. I usually start gearing up for school on Monday afternoons by checking emails and running through my planning, so that I'm ready to roll on Tuesday morning.
    Hope all this is of some help. Don't let the pressure get you down.
     
  20. we do the main planning together at school in PPA time but i still have to do my numeracy at home and yes it does take ages (i have been teaching far too long to say) but i have just changed schools and year group so hoping it will get better with time
     

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