The pride, the workload and toilet breaks: my life after teaching

It feels like barely a month goes by without seeing another blog or report about teachers are walking away from the profession and the recruitment and retention crisis. I'm not judging: I was one of them. After four years at the front of a classroom, I put away my interactive whiteboard pen for the last time and went back to journalism. It's been a...
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Dear students, thank you for being so wonderful that I forget about the stress and enjoy my career

Dear students, Thank you. You may not know it, but you're fantastic. As the teacher, it is my job to create an environment that's as conducive to learning as possible. This may include considering seating arrangements, presentation of material, my attitude in class, how I handle discipline etc and, as much as I consider all of these aspects of the ...
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10 things I learned as a lazy NQT

I was a lazy newly-qualified teacher (NQT). While there were negative aspects to that, there were some definite positives too. I eased myself into teaching, churning out a steady run of "satisfactory" lessons in my first year. I was really well supported by a motivated, organised and inspirational teacher – if she was long-suffering she didn't let ...
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Teachers, stop using collective punishment – it makes you look weak and lazy

I have given up on collective punishment. Don't get me wrong, I have been that teacher. It was many years ago, but I can still feel the sheer desperation and the feeling of vindictive hatred towards the pupils who had wrecked my well-intended, well-planned lesson. Eventually, I realised it was wrong – or perhaps I got better at managing my classes ...
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In with the old and new: we need the NQT and the experienced head of department in the same staffroom

It's not just the kettle that gets heated in the staffroom. A combination of pressure from pupils and pressure from management often results in outbursts directed at the wrong people. "You've only been here five minutes, I've got 20 years' experience" was the inappropriate response levelled at a newly qualified teacher (NQT) in my previous school, ...
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