Monthly Archives: October 2013

Teaching: The First Half Term

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It’s been a while since I’ve had a chance to think about blogging, but now that it’s half term I finally have the time to put in an appearance. What with all the recent strikes and changes to education going on at the moment, my plan was to write a piece in defence of music education, but in all honesty I’m feeling a bit disenchanted with teaching at the moment. Mostly my own teaching abilities, if we’re being specific.  It’s been a difficult 8 weeks to say the least, and there have been many times over the past half term where I’ve wanted to quit. I even spent one evening browsing the jobs sites trying to find a way out which didn’t involve bankruptcy after a particularly gruelling day with year 9.  However, after a few days off to regroup, rest and relax (alliteration, anyone?) I feel like I might just be able to get through the next 7 weeks without tearing the entirety of my hair out. Unbelievably I’m actually starting to miss school, and I’m taking this as a sign that I am in the right job, even if it’s a challenge sometimes.

I’ve been chatting to teacher friends about how difficult the first term is, and we’ve decided that the main thing you don’t expect is the relentlessness of teaching full time, as well as the emotional ups and downs it throws at you. As discussed in my previous post, there are some days when teaching is the best job in the world, and yet others make you wonder why you bother. Aside from healthcare, I’m not sure what other careers really involve this constant barrage of frustration, mild hysteria and paperwork. I realise this sounds very negative, and don’t get me wrong, there are frequent moments when I love my job. But I think part of the nature of what makes us effective teachers is that we constantly reflect on the moments that aren’t quite as good as we’d hoped, and try to figure out how to improve on them. I suppose it’s not really a surprise then that we tend to sometimes become bogged down in these moments, rather than focussing on the times which make us remember why we wanted to teach in the first place.

For fear of sounding like a one-track blogger I’m going to leave this post here, but keep your eyes peeled for my next article, which will hopefully make an appearance before the end of the half term holidays.  Although as there only seems to be space in my brain for music and/or education these days, ideas for articles are always welcome!

And if anyone can give me some tips on keeping year 9 in line, I’d be eternally grateful.

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