From The Big Lebowski. Often I think this is a pretty fair reflection of teaching. Or work. Or life in general.
There, that is life. Life is one day of being top of everything and another day of feeling down in the dumps.
I have solved it!
There are lots of teachers who I talk to, both in the flesh - face to face not naked- and over Twitter who seem very peeved off at the moment.
I know myself that I am feeling pretty down about the job at the moment. It doesn't take much to knock me out of my rhythm and I have spoken before about the need to keep moving forward and maintain a positive outlook.
It is hard though. Especially this time of year with pressure coming at us from all quarters. SLT (who themselves are under pressure) piling it on, students who just want to be free and out in the sunshine, parents who want to know why/what/where is going on and obviously external factors OFSTED/exam entries/coursework moderation etc.
This is all aside from our general teaching and test/book marking and sweeping the floor with a broom up our arses.
Oh and lets not forget that we should have shorter holidays and longer working days.
What was I talking about?
Oh, yeah. Staying positive.
Actually personally it isn't too bad. Come home, put on some loud and heavy music (RUSH), drink copious amounts of tea and remind myself that I would not be earning as much as I am in another job, followed by looking at how many days until the next holiday.
Sounds materialistic and simple but I think when you're down it's whatever helps get you through?
I have been given lots of advice over the course of my teaching 'life' but I think the important things that float up to the top are sometimes the hardest to remember.
- it is a job
- focus on what happens in the classroom first
That's it for me.
It is a job, nothing more and nothing less. Yes I am a professional and I am proud of what I do, but at the end of the day I am not going to get ill or sacrifice what is really important in my life for it.
What happens in the classroom/lab/plaza that is my domain and ultimately what I am judged first and foremost on. So if you are having a bad time, make something that you are going to enjoy teaching. Bring it back around so you enjoy lessons. It doesn't work all the time or with every class but if it happens once it will start to happen more regularly.
Remember schools seem to run on opinions. If people have a high opinion of you staff/students/SLT then you tend to get more leeway to get other things done (in my opinion).
Plus I don't consider planning a fun lesson (for me) to be work. As I enjoy it.
So lets puff our chests out, raise our heads, enjoy the sunshine and remember it is a 3 day weekend this weekend ;-).