Back to school

If you are a parent, you probably dread the end of the Summer and back to school shopping.  But as a teacher, the start of September and beginning of term are the worst!  This year I am in school Monday-Wednesday and so last week I escaped with just a training day on the Tuesday, followed by just one day of children at school on the Wednesday.  However, I’ve mentioned before about my school’s lack of ICT use and as Head of ICT at the school it has been part of my role to modernise the existing methods used.  For example, some teachers still hand-write individual reports rather than type them up on the computer.  The registers are filled in by hand twice each day and then typed in on the computer and printed out and stored away in folders in the office.  One of my biggest challenges has been getting the staff to adapt to an electronic way of thinking!  I don’t get given any extra time on my timetable to do any of these things so Saturday night Dan and I spent nearly five hours at school networking in some new (really old donated, but new to us) computers for the kids for this year.  Oh Saturday nights now that we are married…!

Dan networking a computer

My students got some excellent results in August (One A and two Bs for ICT and One B, one C and a D for Computer Science), especially considering that until year 11 when I arrived at the school they had covered no course content for the exam and not begun any coursework for either subject.  I was very pleased for them and so proud of them for doing so well.  Two of them have gone on to do Computing at college.

One of the things I’ve been most excited about with the new term is that we got a stationary box of goodies from the Friends of the school.  As an Independent school, we operate as a charity.  This means as a teacher if you need a projector, you buy one.  Or if you need colouring pens you have to source them from somewhere (usually your own home!)  I’ve got so many pretty coloured board pens now and 1000 paper clips.  If I am given 1000 paperclips, I will find a use for 1000 paper clips!
School stationarySimple things!

I’m determined to stay on top of things this year and the first thing I did on the training morning was to design and print off a month’s worth of life planning sheets.  I like to be organised!

Planning organisation sheet

After a full day of teaching on Monday, I headed out with a friend to check out the new Northampton Half route ready for Sunday, when I’m working as a sector lead.  (Go Beyond are still short a few marshals, so if you fancy earning a few quid, or gaining a free Go Beyond race entry for later in the year, let me know and I’ll put you in touch.)  By the time I got home after a full teaching day followed by running nine miles of the course I really didn’t want to faff around and make any tea, so I was very happy to see that whilst I’d been away Dan had washed up, put clothes away and made me a sausage curry with a side salad.  He’s a good ‘un!

Sausage currySide salad

I  had a place at the Great North Run on Sunday but I didn’t race it.  It was something I had been debating for a while.  I am not road race fit currently and we hadn’t booked a hotel as funds have been tight with the wedding this year.  Dan had offered to drive me to the race and be my support crew but it would have meant an incredibly early start, lots of hanging around and running a race where I wouldn’t have been happy with my form.  In the end I very sadly, but I believe rightfully, did not take my place on the starting line on Sunday.  Dan and I have spent very little time together since returning from honeymoon.  Work has been crazy for both of us, and the year of weddings and 30th birthdays has meant that in actual fact we have something booked in on the calendar every weekend until the end of November!  So we enjoyed a few hours together on Sunday afternoon which we otherwise would not have gotten.

Visit here to check out the best cheap projector under 100 which can provide you high resolution and great contrast.

Have you ever made a last minute decision not to attend a race/event just to chill out with your other half?
How do you stay organised when life gets busy?

10 thoughts on “Back to school

  1. Curry looks amazing!! Yum!

    Hope the marshalling goes well on Sunday! I’d help ou but am at Bacchus marathon – drinking wine and pootling around in fancy dress. It’s a hard old life …

    Yes – I’ve got to make the decision whether or not to run in a few weeks. I have an ultra booked but just haven’t managed enough training with a combination of PF and other things.
    Sarah F recently posted…Goodbye Summer … I’ll miss youMy Profile

    1. Good luck at your marathon! Not sure I’ll be allowed to drink wine or pootle around in fancy dress at the half so I’m envious of you getting to do both! 😛
      I figure ultras are always much more relaxed than road running…I’m sure you’ll be fine to run as your general level of fitness must be pretty high anyway. Which ultra are you booked in for?

  2. I have not done race due to being ill. I am glad I did the GNR but I would not do it again I don’t think, as I prefer smaller races, and it was all mainly on dual carriageway so not that scenic.
    I work in a county school and we are like a charity too- if I need post it notes or stickers or laminating pouches or felt pens then I buy them myself- the school budgets have been badly cut so that is just how it goes now.
    Maria @ runningcupcake recently posted…The streak comes to an endMy Profile

    1. I wanted to do the GNR to have done it, but I’m not so sure that I would really enjoy it the way I do smaller country races.
      It is incredibly frustrating having to supply materials at school all the time which then eats into my own budget! I’m glad I’m not the only one feeling the pinch of the school pocket!

  3. The curry looks amazing – do you have the recipe? What a keeper, your hubby 😉
    This year I’ve ducked out of three racing events but mainly down to injury/not happy with how my running is going. But it is a relief when they’re far away. Cheddar Gorge half marathon would have meant leaving the house at 6am. Though I love that race it wasn’t sensible – a hilly off road half to train for a flat on road marathon…no brainer really.
    I love how dedicated you are to your job. Going the extra mile and really working hard for your pupils. Very inspiring!

    1. Dan says he just heated some oil in a pan, stirred in two tablespoons of mild curry powder, added in some meat stock and a little cornflour to thicken the sauce. Add some sausages you’ve already cooked to the pan and cook some noodles. I think I was more impressed that he made me a side salad to go with it though! He’s definitely a keeper!

  4. I love the organisation/to do list thing! Well done on your students’ GCSE results too – I know from my sister how harrowing that can be (she teaches English yrs 7-11).

    I struggle massively with organisation but I’m a list maker at heart. Having said that, what is working particularly well for me at the moment is writing one thing on a Post It, sticking it to my screen, and then throwing it away when the task is complete. It’s very much a visual aid – hardly sophisticated, quite wasteful, but effective for me right now.

    Were you able to defer your GNR place?
    Steph recently posted…30 things before I turn 30My Profile

    1. I hope your sister was as happy with her results too. There’s so much pressure on GCSE teachers to get students through the exams, but even more so on English or Maths teachers.
      Thanks. :) I work well with lots of colour and lists everywhere! I’m all about the visual aids too. Post Its are great for being able to move them around and reorganise as you go.
      I didn’t defer my GNR place unfortunately as I had already deferred from 2013 at a cost of £50. I couldn’t justify another £50 deferral. :( I’ll run it one day though I’m sure.

  5. You did the right thing by not running the GNR if you didn’t feel you’d enjoy it. I wish I had your pragmatic attitude about not being fit, because I’ve run enough races myself this year in terrible, poor shape to know that all it brings is frustration, anger and sadness.

    You really are the most organized person ever! I’d give anything to be the same way, but I’m obsessive-compulsive about some things and then completely chaotic and unfocused about others…and sadly the latter tend to be the elements of life that actually matter :/

    Jess recently posted…Race Recap ~ Pieces of 8 Trail Half Marathon ~ 2:07:15My Profile

    1. I’m trying my best to be organised. I think I’m fairly organised in my professional persona but come to my personal life and I’m all over the place!
      I know I did the right thing by pulling out of the GNR but I couldn’t even bring myself to watch the coverage on the TV and this made me sad. :(

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