Get in touch

Job Search

Search for Teaching Jobs in England

February is the cruellest month

Miranda is a Primary Supply Teacher working in schools through Protocol Education in Manchester. It's cold, it's getting colder, and all we want to do is stay in bed and not answer the phone on those early mornings of supply teaching. Miranda shares her tips for getting through February. Come on, we can all get through it together!

February is the cruellest month

Getting out of bed for work is like pulling out your molars using a cheese wire and a slammed door. The supply teacher without a pre-booking waits poised between the dread and delight as the phone buzzes from under the ball pond of tissues in her dressing gown pocket.

No one has the time or mental energy for strangers although there is a certain relief when one arrives, on time, breezy and apparently bright (don’t believe everything that Michael Gove – the bully in the playground - tells you about your capabilities).

Sickness is everywhere we look (keep taking the vitamins) and a feeling of relentless darkness has fallen upon every staff room around the country. Everyone’s on the 5:2 diet and the cat-foody smell of Cuppa Soups stalks the corridors. The student teacher who keeps going down to the village for chips, seems oblivious to the icicle daggers flying their way. And a fresh raft of notices suggesting the Head’s New Year’s Resolution to get her own head around the new primary curriculum can only bode badly for everyone else.

No one has the time or mental energy for strangers although there is a certain relief when one arrives, on time, breezy and apparently bright (don’t believe everything that Michael Gove – the bully in the playground - tells you about your capabilities).

There’s a long doomy shadows cast over primary education, money is tight, supply teaching is a cost that everyone would rather cut, and your face is a reminder of money that might have been saved if it wasn’t for the Year 2 sickness bug. What can we teachers do, except wait for the first thaw and keep our peckers up like the hard-working professional family we are? For what it’s worth, here’s my New Year plan to get me through the dark months:

  • Read Philip Larkin about winter, about spring, about the painful pleasures of starting a new cycle, coming in at the new year again. ‘Last year is dead…/Begin afresh, afresh, afresh.’
  • Spring clean tired old lesson plans and prepare new ones for each year group I teach. Look up videos of outstanding practice on You Tube and nick ideas.
  • Join a union. I know, I shoulda, I woulda, I coulda earlier but it costs money though I believe less money if you’re part-time or a supply teacher.
  • Keep de-icer in car along with a spare jumper. Have you noticed every school in the country is either Arctic or equatorial – you never know which micro-climate you’re going to get.

Ah well, chin up, and happy Spring term everyone!

We'd like to hear your tips about getting through February and the tougher times of being a supply teacher. Email Megan at mparsons@protocol-education.com or share with us on TwitterFacebook, or Google+


Tags: Miranda, February, supply, tough-times, Spring-term

Category: Australian Teachers


Share |


Back to the Blog Home Page

Comments (0)

There are no comments to show. You can add one by using the form below.

Add a Comment

Name:
Email (kept private):
Comment:
Security Code: antispam
Protocol Education Blog

OCTOBER 2017 | "Your teaching agency needs to be transparent"
Jacqui is an Aussie teacher who has just returned from her 2 years in the UK. She got in touch with Mitch from the Sydney office and has been able to...
Read More

AUGUST 2017 | Aussie Dollar vs British Pound
Mitch Jones is Protocol Education’s NSW-based consultant working with Australian teachers in their move to the UK. In his latest blog he chats...
Read More

JUNE 2017 | Taking a long term approach to teaching
Alyce is an Aussie Primary teacher who took part in our September 2016 round of 'Interviews with a UK Principal.' Rather than start her role...
Read More

MAY 2017 | Been to London, Bought the T-Shirt, Back in Sydney
Brad is an Aussie teacher who has just returned to Sydney after spending nearly 2 years living and teaching with Protocol in London! Fair to say he’s...
Read More

A Teacher's Journey to London
Stephanie is a teacher originally from Canada, and in this latest blog she wants to give some advice (and hopefully inspiration) to other teachers from...
Read More