Monday, 25 July 2011

Schools out for summer!

Finally made it! The summer holidays! From the first day back in September, this is the moment that every teacher longs for... that very first Monday morning of the summer holidays, knowing that as the rest of the world struggle to get out of bed, the majority of the teaching profession will stir at about 6.30am, look at the time, smile, then turn over and go back to sleep for a while longer. Knowing that for at least the next 6 weeks Monday mornings won't be filled with anxiety and dread about what the day ahead will bring.

Which does bring me nicely onto something a little mad I thought I would do. The cycle to work scheme... Hmmm... So now I have a bike to pick up, along with some essential accessories. I have convinced myself that I will be able to cycle to work. Yes, actually get out of my beloved bed at least 45 minutes earlier than usual, and cycle to work. As long as I do this at least once (and I don't mean once a week), I think I can justify this foolish decision. What seems to be of amusement to the majority of my colleagues is that the idea of my best friend in the world (P) and I will be attempting this ride to school together, with no idea of the rules of the road, and the slight anxiety of knowing we will need to take a hand off the handlebars at some point to indicate which way we are about to turn.

Having thought a little about this and read a leaflet the kind man in the cycle shop gave me, I am perhaps thinking public liability insurance may well be worth while... particularly if you have ever seen P and I do anything together, that requires concentration. So easily distracted, so easily amused, sand to be honest, so easily confused!

Thursday, 7 July 2011

Avez Vouz une pomme de terre, sil vous plait?

I had an email from a collegue today who has been off work for at least two months now. It was good to hear from this person as there are a few of us at work that have been worried. A couple of my other close work collegues got the same email which was asking about how things were going and for any good news.

Three of my friends replied with 'good news'. New appointments in their faculty, new babies, planned holidays blah blah blah...

I have no 'good news'. Not even 'news' to be honest. In fact the best 'news' I could muster up was the fact that I had mixed nuts and dried cranberries for lunch today. And then I remembered a conversation I had yesterday with the deputy head.

The DHT has been messing around with the bloody deployment, for next year, for over three weeks now. Then yesterday morning, the words 'I need to have a quick chat with you about deployment' came.

Brilliant, I thought, here we go. What the hell has he come up with now?
Oh, I was so right!

'You may have to teach a little bit of French next year'.

What the fuck!

The only French I know (apart from the title of this post) is as follows. And you will need to excuse the spelling, as I haven't got a bloody clue.

1. Ferme la bouche - Not really appropriate to be saying to, or teaching, 13 & 14 year olds.
2. Menage a trois - Ermmmm.... well, there really is nothing more I can say about that!
3. Voulez Vous coucher avec moi ce soir? - Hmmmm.... errrrrr...

So, I am not so sure that this will impress the parents, get the students through their GCSE's or leave me with a job!!

I am currently working on the DHT with all my charm and persuasion, until he sees the light and realises what a complete and utter fuck up it would be for me to teach the language of love to 14 year olds (or is that Italian?)

Monday, 4 July 2011

Monday morning smiles...

I had another interesting lesson with my year 8's this morning. They are still working hard on their chosen projects and have produced some pretty special work. Really.
Anyway, the same young man (let's call him Eric) that had previously asked me about going up into space and being transported back down to earth via portholes, wanted to ask another question or two.

Eric is a very inquisitive young man. It's nice to have a student that will ask lots of questions. It doesn't seem to happen much anymore. 13 years olds just don't seem to care enough.

So, Eric asks me a few questions about space travel. How much do you think astronauts get paid, how much do you think it's costs to travel into space etc etc. I excitedly tell him all about Virgin Galactic and how phenomenal it would be to go into space.

Eric's response was not one I was expecting...

...Michael Jackson has been to the moon hasn't he? He made a film about it called Moonwalker...

Wow! He left me speechless for a few moments, but that soon turned into chuckles which I just could not disguise at all.

I'm making sure I will be teaching Eric again in the new academic year. The entertainment value is priceless.

Sunday, 3 July 2011


Watching Wimbledon always reminds me of two specific times in my life.

The first time must have been when I was about 8 years old. I remember it being roasting hot and tearing around the garden with my little sister, wanting homemade orange squash ice lollies from the freezer. My mother, half watching the tennis whilst doing mum like things, not sure what though. My father, in the shed at the top of the garden doing dad like things. Sounds like an idyllic childhood summer. And I suppose it was.
I just remember thinking... why on earth would anyone want to watch tennis, it's so boring. Those thoughts were closely followed by... When is Cities of Gold and Thundercats on?

The second time was when I was 16 years old. I had just finished sitting my GCSE exams. I spent every day that summer with my best friend at the time, Jenny. We sat and watched tennis all day, every day for two weeks. We then attempted to play it ourselves. Hours of amusement to onlookers I am sure!

Another Wimbledon over. Djokovic the champion for 2011. I wonder where I will be this time next year? Here's hoping I will be watching Nadal pick his underwear out from his backside on Centre Court!