Five productive ways to spend 10 minutes

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I am not exaggerating when I tell you that the list I am sharing with you today has changed my life! My home is cleaner, tidier and more organised than it has ever been, my relationships with friends and family are stronger and I feel healthier, calmer and more successful as a person. And all of this has happened through the power of…10 short minutes!

Yes, I am serious.   Continue reading

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New Classroom: My £1 or less shopping haul! 

£1 or less new classroom shopping haul! Lots of tiny budget, dollar store teaching ideas

There’s a meme somewhere on the internet that says something like ‘teaching: the one job where you steal supplies from home to bring into work’. If you are a teacher I’m sure you will get the joke! The truth is, although a lot of essentials will be paid for by the school you work in, if you want to add anything extra or make your classroom look anything like all the incredible ones you’ve seen on Pinterest, it’s going to cost you something. The problem is none of us have unlimited reserves to spend on all the things we know could make our teaching and learning environments better!

So what’s the answer? Not bother at all? Or commit to doing the best we can with the finances we have available to us? If you’re reading this post then I assume, like me, you’ve committed to the latter. Good choice! I’ve become super geeky and over-excited about finding ways to save money as a teacher whilst still doing an awesome job in the classroom. I recently found out I’m getting a new classroom so I went on a shopping spree to pick up some new things. However, I set myself a bit of a challenge: an overall budget of £12 and a maximum spend of £1 (about $1.50) on each individual item. Here are the items I bought and how I plan to use them!

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Dear New Teacher…3 things you need to know!

new teachers trainees advice tips

Dear New Teacher,

As we approach the start of the school year, I’ll bet you are experiencing quite a range of different emotions. You’ll be excited, I hope, and so you should be. Don’t let anyone dampen that and avoid spending time with cynics or more ‘experienced’ teachers that have forgotten why they signed up to it all in the first place.
You will probably also be feeling quite apprehensive – maybe even scared – about the prospect of being a ‘real’ teacher for the first time. Don’t worry! That’s very normal. I’ll soon be going into my third year as a qualified teacher and I still feel that mix of nerves and excitement as September approaches.

I have both good and bad news for you.

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Paper Problems: My Worksheet Heartbreak.

worksheet teaching

Dear Worksheet,

Okay, I admit it. We’ve had some fun times together. You’ve saved me hours of lesson planning and pretty much single-handedly got me through my teaching training year. You’ve got so many qualities, which is what drew me to you in the first place. You can be fun, you keep the kids busy while I catch up on the countless tasks on my to-do list, you are loyal and you are reliable.

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How to get more done and have more time!

Teachers: get more done and have more time! Teacher workload tips.

Wouldn’t you love to have more time?

We all know that teaching is an amazing job and has so many perks but one of the big things all teachers find themselves struggling with at one point or another is time management. It seems like no matter what we do, the work just keeps on piling up – marking, report writing, lesson planning, extra-curricular activities, meetings, analysing data, professional development and so on. And we are supposed to fit all of this around actually teaching children for most of the day!

If you are a teacher you will know that, whilst we love and appreciate our holidays, they barely make up for the intensity with which we have to live our lives for most of the year. We arrive early, teach all day, stay late trying to desperately tick everything on our to-do list, go home to cook, clean and squeeze in some time with our family and friends then do it all over again, five times a week!

Imagine – just for a second – if you didn’t have to rush so much? Continue reading

12 Quick Tips: How to get a Teaching Job

How to prepare for interviews and get a teaching job

Let’s start with a riddle:

I make some people feel great but leave others disappointed. I lead to both good and bad news – good for some and bad for others. I am a necessity and you will probably encounter me numerous times in your working life.

What am I?

Did you guess it? The answer is a job interview. Let me explain. Continue reading

TEACHING: 3 reasons I’ll never quit

Teaching: 3 reasons I'll never quit

“Miss, you won’t be here next year. You’ll quit”.

I am in my classroom with thirty pairs of eyes on me. My most challenging class. I have learned more about teaching, relationships and myself through them than most other people I have spent time with in my life. Not that they realize this, or intended it, of course.

Today they have something more to teach me. They are not playing the game, not doing what I ask, not listening. And at the back a handful of girls are trying to push all the wrong buttons. Finally the dark-haired one, Janey, shouts something that takes me aback: “Miss, you won’t be here next year. You’ll quit”. I am not expecting this. I pause for a moment then reply, as calmly as I can, “I have no intention of leaving. I will be here next year.” Continue reading