Forget pride, sloth and the rest. Here are the seven deadly sins which can stop teachers in their tracks!
An essential quality for being a teacher is to care – we all invest a lot emotionally in our students. But the flip side of that, is that we blame ourselves when things go wrong. If they don’t get the results they want, if they don’t understand a concept after having it explained ten times… we decide it’s our fault.
It’s not just students who get the jitters about exams. Teachers do too. And about giving assemblies. And parents evenings. And difficult classes. We all have things which scare us, and sometimes it’s all too easy to give in to the fear.
Teaching is a never-ending job. You could easily work 24-hours a day and still not get everything done. Overworking goes with the territory and can be the downfall for many, as it leads to stress and burnout.
The school day is manic. Try explaining it to a friend with an office job and they just don’t get it. There is no let-up, and that often means no time to eat. How many times have you got to the end of the day and realised you haven’t eaten anything since breakfast?
Almost everyone has been to school, so almost everyone has an opinion on teaching. And usually, this opinion is on what you’re doing wrong – not what you’re getting right. In this climate, it’s so easy to lack faith in yourself.
You’ve told a class FIVE TIMES to start packing up, and they’re still not doing it. Or you’ve given a student three chances to hand in an essay and it still hasn’t turned up. Or a colleague has just landed you with a pile of unexpected marking. In these circumstances, it can be difficult not to blow your lid. After all, you’re only human.
You may be in front of classes all day, but teaching is still one of the loneliest professions there is. You’re often the only responsible adult in a room for hours on end. You see colleagues for twenty minutes, then a bell rings and you all disappear into your own rooms. It’s easy to feel isolated.
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