Teaching young people has always had its challenges but adding a global pandemic to the mix comes with a new set of unique irritants. Beyond explores 5 things students do to annoy teachers throughout Covid-19…
Most educators can agree that teaching is a very rewarding profession. Watching our students grow and succeed brings us joy and is definitely the highlight of the job. However, there are certainly some annoying things that make our job difficult – especially in this current climate. Every school has implemented Covid-19 protective measures to reduce the risk of transmission and keep us safe. All we have to do is follow the guidelines but for some strange reason it’s proving too difficult for a lot of young people.
Here are 5 things students do to annoy teachers throughout Covid-19, since returning to school:
1. All things masks
We’ve been appointed as the mask police against our will. We patrol our classrooms and hallways badgering students about the importance of mask-wearing but it’s still falling on deaf ears. Some just flat out refuse to put them on, while those that do comply enjoying rocking them as creative chin straps or headbands. Some students have even started a new game of pulling masks off each other’s faces! (yes these are teenagers not toddlers). And don’t forget the ones that only wear them so they can make silly animal noises and chat to their mates. As if we didn’t have enough on our plates, this is just another battle we need to fight daily.
2. Bubble bursters
There have been major changes to the way we move around school. The social distancing guidelines means that most schools are using bubbles to minimise mixing. There are different lunch times, the playgrounds have been divided and there is a one way system in the school building. But the bubble bursters don’t care. Hallways are decked out with signs, arrows and even directions printed on the floor (big and bold might I add) but some students insist on completing ignoring the lot! The worst is the grumbles of indignation you receive when you remind them to follow the one way system – typical! Excuse us for trying to stay alive during a global pandemic, taking the shortcut to your lesson is much more important.
3. Increased toilet breaks
After months of being in the luxury of their own homes, with their cameras off, mics muted and unlimited access to food, water and the loo getting back into the school routine is a challenge. Students seem to need the toilet every hour on the hour. There seems to be a collective weakening of bladders among young people world wide. We understand why they are doing this but it doesn’t make it any less annoying! There’s nothing more deflating than thinking hands are raised ready to answer your thought provoking questions only to find they’re just asking for the loo.
We couldn’t get them to unmute their mics and speak during online sessions now we can’t shut them up. The tumbleweed remote lessons have been replaced with a football-match-level racket in the classroom. Why are they so loud? They are all so excited about everything school except the actual education part. Being reunited and chatting with their friends is top priority. As happy as we are for them work still needs to get done! There’s no GCSE in chatting – sorry.
5. Going barmy with sanitation
Sanitisation has become priority number one. We’ve used more wipes, sprays and sanitiser than ever before and it’s not letting up anytime soon. Students are asked to sanitise their hands and wipe their desks and chairs as they leave the classroom. Sounds simple enough right – wrong! For some odd reason a handful of students think it’s perfectly acceptable to grab several wipes instead of one or squirt large amounts of sanitiser on the desk or spray half the bottle of disinfectant when it only needs three sprays max! Then they proceed to grab copious amounts of tissue and end up creating a hot mess when they’re trying to clean it all up. Gosh – suppose we should be happy they’re trying right!
Even with all these annoying things there’s still something so endearing about them. Why do we do it to ourselves, we’re all nuts aren’t we?
Our previous post on the return to school can be found here. Don’t forget to subscribe to Beyond for access to thousands of secondary teaching resources. You can sign up for a free account here and take a look around at our free resources before you subscribe too.