#Nurture 15/16

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I’ve sort of done this in my last blog, but I thought I’d best check out what I said in Nurture 14/15. Don’t worry I’ll keep it brief!

2015

  1. I sort of managed ‘me time’. It generally happened in the wee small hours of the morning. Usually whilst staring at the bedroom ceiling thinking about everything and anything.
  2. The development of online learning resources (in response to FELTAG) have been done. However some things definitely need changing. I have quite a few students who struggle with independent learning. Possibly because they struggled to stay in school and spent most of it in PRU’s? Not sure, but I’ll save that for another blog.
  3. I’ve had a great time at various #UKFEchat events. Most memorable are the TES FE Awards, Ofsted and the first #UKFEchat conference.
  4. My daughter is at the secondary school she and I hoped for and loving it.
  5. I continue to engage with twitter and have attended several educational events.

2016

  1. Progress ‘me time’ to being actually during the day and not sat staring at walls thinking about work etc…
  2. Look at changing the content of the online learning resources. This will involve a discussion with the students concerned.
  3. Continue to attend the #UKFEchat events and contribute to the weekly discussion forums.
  4. Keep my daughter on track with her school work (she has a lazy streak).
  5. As last year, I will continue to engage with twitter and I am already booked in for Primary Rocks in March and Northern Rocks in June.

 

Finally

Thanks to @ChocoTzar for starting the Nurture posts back in 2013.

Thanks to Sarah Simons (@MrsSarahSimons) for all the great stuff she does for FE with #UKFEchat. Also for being a great friend.

Thanks to my good friend @cherrylkd for being my conference buddy, beer buddy, natter buddy, cheer up buddy…The list is endless!

Thanks to @sezl for letting me be part of her 50 before 50 challenge. Also thanks for making me laugh a lot at your wonderful humour on and off twitter.

There are many more I could thank for keeping me sane throughout the year, but I’ll shut up now. You all know who you are.

 

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It has been a tough old term.

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The festive holidays are upon us and I swear I could almost hear a synchronized sigh of relief from teachers all over the land!

So how was your term? Mine was tough and I’m writing this for selfish reasons. I want to just pour out my little soul about this term. It’s been tough for a number of reasons. So much so that I drafted my resignation in my head at least fifty times. I’ve never felt so low about education and more particularly with Further Education.

  • Everything seems to be needed to be done months before it should be and a million times faster!
  • Teachers are so busy doing admin work that little time is left for focusing on quality teaching and learning.
  • Yet again we are being given a list of what Ofsted wants and some colleges are still insisting on grading internal observations.
  • Students and staff have struggled with the maths and English agenda of the government and we are all at our wits end with it all. I have touched on why here.
  • Finally there is little money for FE and therefore retention and achievement is even more important than ever. This is leading to some teachers values and beliefs being pushed over the edge.

With all this going on my own personal health has impacted on my feelings towards teaching. It would seem early menopause is not much fun when teaching. It is extremely hard teaching when you feel like you are about to combust with internal rage over your board marker not working, or that you are about to physically melt infront of your students. Unfortunately it seems to bugger up your hormones and leave you feeling like Jekyll and Hyde.

At the October break I focused on my family and made sure I didn’t look at work emails or take work home with me. I did take part in the first UKFEchat conference however (see here). The combination of both actually helped lift me out of my negative slump towards teaching. Slowly I managed to talk myself out of being a shop assistant and all other daft ideas I had. As for the health issue, I’m just going to have to ride the storm, as so many other women do.

So what will I do to get through the next term?

  • I will continue to ignore college emails out of office time.
  • I will strive to do all planning and marking at college, not home.
  • I will keep most weekends for my family and friends.
  • I will go to the local pub more with @cherrylkd
  • I will attend Primary Rocks, ReseachEd, Northern Rocks and hopefully another UKFEchat conference (these events are great to help boost my motivation for teaching and learning).
  • I will learn to play the piano.
  • I will get a dog (the cats will get over it).
  • I will reduce the amount of crap I eat at college. Sweets and crisps are not a staple diet.

I think that will do for now. Merry Christmas to you all.