Thank Goodness I’m a Teacher

It is Day 1 of Lockdown and a Friday AND my school blog is due. We’re probably all a little nauseatedly sick and tired of Coronavirus posts, articles, memes, advice, and most are probably full of plenty of Acute and Chronic Cabin Fever already, schools and many companies having shifted online already.  But l can’t […]

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Sibling Syndrome

HeronBridge, like all schools, has seen its share of families and siblings bounce through its classrooms and fields. It’s an amazing thing for a teacher to be just a part of a thread of a family’s years at school when you teach more than one of the precious offspring they entrust to you. This morning, […]

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Waiting for the Heat to Kick us in the Teeth

Faces reddening, eyes streaming, throat choking, pain and anger in every pixel on the screen, futile flailing, desperate air-gulping… That is the Spicy Noodle Challenge that was about two hours’ worth of guilty pleasure for me a few days ago. Yep, sometimes English teachers don’t just spend 24/7 with their red pens or curl up […]

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Ziplining Through the Year

In my very first year at HeronBridge (young, wide-eyed, wrinkle-free), I went on the Grade 11 camp with Mrs Jelley and, if anyone remembers him, a very hyperactive and mischievous Mr Muddiman. I am a bit of a wuss when it comes to adventurous pursuits – I am a little claustrophobic, a bit afraid of […]

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Close to a Teacher’s Heart You’ll Find …

Coffee. Or tea. Some people do like tea. It’s the time of year where, generally mainly in the younger years and grades, some parents are considering the mighty challenge of the ‘Teacher Gift.’ I am an enthusiastic and often amused follower of the I Love Fourways group on Facebook, and there are plenty of pleas […]

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Ubuntulessness and the White and Blue

Sometimes human beings are hard to motivate. There’s a fabulously funny and not  necessarily accurate stereotype of teens being the feet-dragging, downward-mouth-turning, eye-rolling apathetics of the world. But we’re all prone to feeling tired, grumpy, unmotivated and rather unco-operative.  Any class in the later lessons on a Thursday epitomises this, but most of the time […]

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Remember Your Why (Me)?

I might be hurtling towards middle age, accumulating years and years of performing-monkey-poetry-teaching experience (and addictions to coffee, and stationery) on top of a good few years of university, a century ago, but l, Iike all of us in this precarious, fragile, worrying world of ours, still learn something new each and every day, and […]

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Holidays, AKA Letting the (Stop-and-Go) Dust Settle

They’re here, the August holidays, a time to Stop after all the Go-Go-Go-Go of a typically tiring, frantically frenetic Term 2 – it’s the same sense of relief as, as after half an hour at the Stop, finally being told to Go. After a term of inhaling dusty air and the Eat or be Eaten, […]

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One Thing at a Time

About three years ago, when the juggling of to-do lists of knives, duties, watermelons, bowling pin things, balls, marking piles and flamethrowers were getting out of hand (literally and figuratively), l adopted this mantra in desperation. I now bleat it at myself, my friends, my mother, my car, my students and unreliably veering supermarket trolleys […]

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The Pen is Less Grillerig than the Sword Or Why Weird School Days are Wonderful

I’ve been buying stationery again. It ultimately benefits the students, l promise. Also, green pens are for moderation, ironic in my case (see image). It’s a self-soothing, highly impractical and expensive habit. There’s also no end in sight for this fatal flaw, because l am a teacher – stationery is essential and NICE stationery is […]

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Sincere Support for School Support

You’d think that, with my pathological addiction to alliteration, books and setting poetry tests, I would be writing vast tracts in support of reading and other academic pursuits, and I am sure I have and will. But I am wholeheartedly, eleventy-million percent (Maths was never my strong point, something I sadly have in common with […]

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Where Have All the Students gone?!

Someone once said that a school could function perfectly if there were no students in it… l think that MIGHT be missing the point just a tad. But a student-free classroom itself is a strange beast. There’s the important before-school prep time, when the classroom is empty, the noise outside grows as students arrive, and […]

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