A three month or so teaching recap

at 10:36

Tuesday, 30 December 2008

So, as it turns out being a student teacher fucking sucks.

Like, really, really, really sucks.

For instance: I do not plan things. I know my shit, I get up and I do my thing. This is the way I work. I do not, nay cannot, plan an hour down to three minute intervals. But unfortunately that's what I have to do, no choice in the matter. And even more unfortunately I suck if I don't.

Every single lesson I teach is watched by the classroom teacher, which is fine except when the CT is a neurotic overly professional perfectionist something which makes for being a fabulous teacher (and she is) but is something that I'll never achieve. Her lessons in particular scare the living hell out of me, I had nightmares about not being able to photocopy the worksheets I needed to for her class (which I will be taking in a freaking week's time, not tomorrow - in a week) last night and I woke up in a cold sweat (of course then I had bizarre dreams about a class reunion with a random group of people none of whom I actually went to school with). I spend twelve times as long planning for her lessons than I do for anyone else's which then makes me nervous in the rest. It's a vicious cycle.

Of course, I had the entire Christmas holidays to plan, really get on top of things so that I could go back stress free.

Yeah, I'm guessing a couple of people know exactly how well that went.

I spent my day yesterday, my first day back at home when I was free to work, hunting lizard warriors on my 360 (sweet, shiny 360. Evil 360 in that can't copy bloody saved games over between profiles so can only play Fable 2 on Mr Odd's machine)

On top of that I was in bed and ill for my entire last week of school so I have no idea what any of the staff members did with my classes so I don't have a clue what to plan. Except for one teacher's class.

Can you guess which one?

I know EXACTLY what I need to do for those, so they are the only ones I can plan.

And yesterday I managed to plan 3/4 of a lesson. I also put up 1/5 of a book case, cooked yummy pasta, watched stand-up comedy, tried to revise Physics GCSE, decided it was too hard, got into panic because I actually have to teach it, then decided I would get job teaching in specialist school where teachers only teach their actual specialism and I would be incredibly nice and teach both chem and bio, then realised that I actually teach physics better than the other two because I don't understand it myself, then panicked about the fact that I can't decide where I want to teach next year and apply for jobs because I don't know what country I'll be living in (long story, although should find out in a couple of weeks, crossing fingers for somewhere in UK) so have to wait again.

Frustration leads to lizard slaying.

Surprisingly the best part of the job is the kids. And I know, I know, teachers are supposed to love children but I honestly think that it sometimes helps if you don't... I can pretty much take or leave the anonymous faces of my top set year 8 who are mostly adorable but terrify me because of their teacher. They are used to very good quality teaching, they do not get this with me. But I love my delinquent bottom set (not my bratty over privileged middle set who are constantly annoying, hate the subject and make it completely obvious but are terrified of their parents and so behave creepily well when there is a threat of a phonecall on the cards), it's a smaller class and I share it so I actually have time to wander round and chat to the kids and get to know them, which is the part I love.

Which was... surprising to say the least.

So yeah, that's teaching for you, I only have three more weeks left in this school and then I move on. Which I am looking forwards to massively, I love the department and have got amazing levels of support from everyone there but there is one tiny problem with the school that makes me uncomfortable teaching there.

It's all boys.

And I hate teenage boys in large quantities. I hated them when I was a teenage girl, I hate them now. Everything just has to be so bloody boisterous all the time, everything has to have an element of competition to get things done. They can't sit still, can't keep their hands off one another, can't be quiet. And because of the environment, it's wrong to want or expect any other kind of behaviour from them. And I do understand the importance for an entirely male environment that they have strong female teachers who can turn around and say "look how many things I am better at than you" but as a trainee it's exhausting. Because of the way they feed into one another you can't allow any kind of relaxing of discipline because you can't get them back - I honestly thought it would be hard to stand up for an hour and continually be a bitch to little kids aged 11, turns out it really, really isn't. Because they're so damned annoying.

Bring on next year when I might actually get to teach A level!

Next placement should be good though, I'm paired again which I'm not supposed to be but that actually works in my favour as the girl I'm placed with is a whirlwind of awesomeness and fun and always up for going to the pub which is great. My new school is mixed and massive which is daunting cause I'm crap at learning names and get lost very easily within large buildings (not on streets though, I have an excellent sense of direction honed by years of waking up at 6am going "oh fuck" and then desperately searching for the nearest bus stop).

The hardest part is over now though, it's the point before Christmas where you feel lowest apparently - crazy deadlines and you're just so tired. I just have that extra hurdle of having been off sick at the end of term, it is making it slightly nerve wracking to go back - I'll get over it though, I always do.

So for the rest of today I have a plan: 2 hours of working, break to go buy screwdriver, more working until friend (also teacher, not on my course or in my school - most helpful person for reassurance ever) comes over, cook dinner, put up remaining 4/5 of bookcase with wine, watch Dark Knight on DVD with more wine and home made Italian food.

Then tomorrow I'm fucking off the work and getting my ass on a train to spend new year well away from all things work related. Huzzah!

whispering into the void

at 23:35

Monday, 29 December 2008

I'm back.