A reflection on the first month back


So, we’ve been back to school for a month now, and I finally have time to sit down and think about it. Here, in no particular order are a ramble of those thoughts.

  1. OMG It’s so hard and tiring!!

I probably feel this way every new school year, but this time it was really a shock to the system, maybe as I was particularly busy this summer writing my dissertation for an M.A. TESOL (I passed!) when I should have been preparing lessons as some fool (me!) decided to change the course books for nearly all my classes in the same year.

Also my new timetable means back-to-back teaching all day on both Monday and Tuesday – a challenge for my lack of organisational skills.

The cherry-on-the-cake was falling ill, I don’t do poorly and a bad sore throat has put me in a bad mood all week and certainly hasn’t been helped by parents meetings.

2. Time goes so quickly!

I had all these plans to do loads of cool stuff and haven’t managed half of it. That’s not to say we’ve done nothing. A fantastic workshop by Joe Dale @joedale at the recent ETAS PD day gave me loads of fun ideas, like livening up that boring “present yourself” exercise at the beginning of the year using the yakit kids app on the ipad.


3. I get more out of conferences when I present a workshop

I don’t know why, maybe I get more of a buzz, but the recent ETAS conference was the first  event I’ve been to in a while where I wasn’t presenting and it wasn’t the same. Saying that it was great to link up to some good conference buddies like the amazing Dina Blanco-Loannou and the aforementioned Joe.

4. I need to take time for me

I’m a better teacher when I sleep lots, eat well and run. It’s simple but I forget it too often. Oh and I need to read and have a laugh with friends more often too.

5. It’s worth putting in the preparation time

Probably in all areas of life, but with my packed timetable the best way to get through the week is by spending Sunday (and part of Saturday this week!) planning. That’s not the hardship it might sound because I actually enjoy planning and finding resources and fun stuff to do in class.

6.I love learning

Since finishing my M.A. (which felt like putting the final lick of paint on the Forth bridge!) I’ve signed up to a couple of future learn courses and one on coursera.

And finally, it’s not just about me! How has your “rentrée” gone? Drop me a line and let me know.



About fabenglishteacher

enjoying sharing learning
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3 Responses to A reflection on the first month back

  1. Jo says:

    Hi Rachel, good to hear your news. I’ve had the same dreaded lurgy too, sore throat and headache! The rentrée has been good for me. This year I have 3 classes of 6e – first time teaching this level for me and I’m enjoying their enthusiasm and sweetness. Ive also got one class of 5e and one 4. I’ve started an English Book Club every Tuesday in the library , we’ve had one session so far with 7 pupils , can take up to 10. We’re reading a Mystery novel, a graded reader from OUP. Also, with my 4e Ive started ‘Shakespeare Friday’ – we’ve been looking at a bio of the man himself. We’re next going on to study Romeo and Juliet, also OUP, and hoping to get them to perform some scenes and invite their parents! Looking forward to seeing how that all develops. Also, this year new classroom and Ive got an interactive whiteboard! First time ever, very slowly starting to use it. If you have any tips or suggestions I’d love to hear them !! It was great reading your post as always!! Kind regards, Jo

    • Hi Jo, good to hear from you. Sounds like you’re going to have fun this year. Try playingwithplays.com for Shakespeare, some great resources. We dud Hamlet last year in 3eme, they loved it.
      I’ll look out some whiteboard stuff – quizlet is a good start.
      Bonne rentrée!

      • Yes Johanna Frey111 says:

        Thanks for that, I knew you’d have some aces up your sleeve! 🙂

        Sent from my Sony Xperia™ smartphone

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