This week I have the rare luxury of a 5 day weekend. My school, although not a faith school, is made up of mostly Muslim students and so we’ve closed for an extended Eid holiday (don’t worry, we have to make this time up later on!)
Anyway, it occurred to me that these extra days off provided a good opportunity to reflect on how I’ve started this new school year and think about what I mean to change. This is my Stop Start Continue for the 2015/2016 academic year:
Shouting when I need to quiet a noisy class.
I had laryngitis last week and completely lost my voice. It’s never happened to me before and I found it very unnerving. I was told I sounded like a creature from Harry Potter. Nice. I need to rest my voice and do the “hand up waiting for silence” thing more, especially with younger classes.
Scribbling seating plans on scraps of paper!
My worst day of the year so far has to be the day I lost my folder with all my classroom doodles of seating plans. I teach in a lot of different rooms this year and seating plans are the only way I can learn names. I was searching all over and everyone I asked was surprised to find I don’t do them electronically. I’m a pen and paper kinda girl! I couldn’t find them and had to start all over again. Chaos.
Keeping my lunch time free for JUST LUNCH
Our lunch time has been reduced so that we finish school earlier. I’m finding this difficult as lunch would often be filled with more than just eating. I could arrange to meet pupils and staff if needed, get photocopying done, and all sorts of other little jobs as well as actually having lunch. Now I need to make sure my lunch is just for me and my food!
Implementing the new KS3 Homework Policy
I wrote this on Sunday night whilst watching Downton Abbey! We have a whole school policy of course but I felt a few things needed clarifying and systems needed introducing in the English department to ensure there was consistency between classes. I’ll be sharing this with everybody next week.
Keeping all of my marking up to date
It’s easy to be on top of your marking when the school year starts and the books are so neat and fresh but this often falls by the wayside as mock exams begin and reports are due in. I need to stick to my book marking rota and make sure the rest of the KS3 books in the department are up to date too.
Having plenty of ME time
I’m getting better at taking less work home with me and making sure I spend time doing the things I want to do. Again, this is always easy at the start of term but if I get into good habits then I can make sure I look after myself properly when more stressful periods come around. I’ve also started exercising regularly with a group of friends from work and I’m really enjoying it. Just have to keep going!