Curriculum, Observations

Chasing my tail

Image created using Typorama under CC License
Image created using Typorama under CC License

I’m not going to lie, it’s been a tough few weeks. Not that my class are particularly challenging – they aren’t. Perhaps a little more spirited than I’ve had over the last couple of years, but they’re a fun bunch. I’m not even sure why this year should be different to any other, but it’s been absolutely manic.

Missing the first two days in class with my children was quite a big deal. I teach them 3 days a week, and it just so happened that the first two days they came in were my day off and management release. It meant I had to dive in headfirst, straight into “proper” lessons at the start of their first full week, and I’ve been chasing my tail ever since.

New curriculum planning, new maths planning, new assessment systems (ok, that one is my fault!), new interventions; they all mean that absolutely everything needs to be done from scratch. Don’t get me wrong, I don’t just churn out the same lessons year on year, but it does mean that in the past, there has been a starting point. Everyone seems to have lots of questions. We are all finding the answers, but everything seems to take a little longer than it has done before.

All of a sudden, we are half way through Term 1 and there are so many things to be done: my working wall doesn’t really work, my SPaG display needs updating, I’ve got a brilliant interactive display but need to set up some new Learnpads so we can access it, my Successful Learning display has all the components on it, but it looks rather scrappy: the list of bits and pieces to do just seems to go on. The really important stuff is done – the lessons are planned, the books are marked, assessments are done, interventions have been put in place, but I just don’t remember the start of a year being quite so frantic. Tomorrow might is set aside for getting some jobs done: there’s very little marking to be done (swimming lessons do have one big advantage!) and Wednesday is planned, so maybe I can catch up with myself.

I remember a friend of mine saying, when she dropped her hours to 4 days, that she still had 5 days of work to do, just in 4 days.  For me, that isn’t quite true, but there are still the same amount of displays and organisational tasks to be done, just with one less day to do them in.  Don’t get me wrong: I love my day off and wouldn’t give it up for the world, but it does mean there are a few less after-school hours in the classroom to get things done.  Prioritising has to be done: it can’t all happen if there aren’t enough hours in the school day.

FullSizeRenderOf course, you may be wondering why, when I am bemoaning all there is to be done, am I writing a blog when I could be marking. It’s simple: the contents of my memory pen are still wedged into my classroom computer! So tonight, I am having enforced shut down. For once, it really won’t do me any harm.

Let the tail chasing resume in the morning!

PS. I obviously needed to get this off my chest.  I had an entirely different title written, with the intention of an entirely different blog.  This one just seemed to fall out of the keyboard.  Chin up and keep chasing!


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