Work life balance by @Shelleyrees001

Name: Shelley Rees
Twitter name: Shelleyrees001
Sector: Secondary
Subject taught (if applicable): English
Position: Director of English
What is your advice about? Work life balance

  1. Plan for ‘me time’ – do not consume your every spare minute with PPA… You need to be happy, healthy and fit to motivate students to learn.
  2. Join Twitter – be on top of your game and connect with some awesome practitioners who will inspire you, share outstanding resources and remind you on those tough days why you stepped into the profession.
  3. Discover great hash tags! #pedagoofriday and #poundlandpedagogy will provide you with oodles of superb ideas to engage your classes whilst ensuring that you don’t impact on your all-important ‘me time’
  4. Bookmark those all-important teaching blogs which will provide you with real-time examples of life on the classroom floor, invaluable advice on how to manage classes/workload/planning and inspire you with innovative teaching ideas.
  5. Invest in a learning library – whether hard copy or digital versions, buy into the latest research and publications. Never forget your role as a lifelong learner so that you keep on top of your (pedagogical) game!

Managing workload by @steelemaths

Name: Jason Steele
Twitter name: @steelemaths
Sector: Secondary
Subject taught (if applicable): Maths
Position: Lead Practioner
What is your advice about? Managing workload

  1. Plan for learning not individual lessons. Start at the end and plan how you will sequence your lessons.
  2. Get a 2 week timetable on A4. Give an overview of your lessons, but also plan in what you’ll be doing in PPA and afterschool.
  3. Find a time when you work best (morning/evening), and use this time effectively.
  4. If something isn’t going to have an effect on teaching or learning, question, is it worth the time?
  5. Don’t reinvent the wheel, leave your ego at the door. Plenty of good free resources out there, find what works for you.

Having some perspective by @rufuswilliam

Name: Rufus
Twitter name: @rufuswilliam
Sector: Secondary
Subject taught (if applicable): Maths
Position: Lead Coach
What is your advice about? Having some perspective

  1. Cultivate your hobbies outside of work, or your hinterland if you like.
  2. Make a point of not speaking about your work with certain friends or your partner.
  3. Read (not just books about Education)
  4. Try your hardest not to take work home with you, literally of figuratively. If this is impossible, limit it to 2 nights a week when you do.
  5. Get out of the school building at least once during the day, perhaps for a brisk walk in a local park.

Leaving work at a sensible time (science context) by @@ruthyie

Name: Ruth Smith
Twitter name: @ruthyie
Sector: Secondary
Subject taught (if applicable): Science
Position: KS5 Science Lead
What is your advice about? Leaving work at a sensible time (science context)

  1. When doing science technician orders each week, quickly create or collate any new resources there and then (worksheets, essential slides), however rough, tidying them up only if you later get time. The thought that goes into Orders forms the bulk of your planning.
  2. ‘Mark’ books at school and do it standing up, against the clock. Do it solely to inform you of what has and hasn’t been grasped, sorting work into categories and then deciding how to communicate to students in each category.
  3. I write the date of ‘marking’ (=looking at books) on the front of the book. I add a star if it’s all going well. I add a pair of spectacles if the student and I need to watch understanding and progress.
  4. ‘Marking’ in this way may not involve writing anything IN the books, but feedback to the class will take numerous forms because you will be aware of what they need. I can’t stop myself correcting/indicating spg errors, though…
  5. When it gets to the end of the working day, go home, and only do more if you know you’ll need a short day later in the week or if you really care about a particular task. If you can mentally bullet point what needs to happen in your lesson, you are ready enough for the next day.

Surviving “no free period” days by @dukkhaboy

Name: Philip Anderson
Twitter name: dukkhaboy
Sector: Secondary
Subject taught (if applicable): Geography
Position: Head of dept
What is your advice about? Surviving “no free period” days

  1. Allow sometime in lessons when you are sat down. Take the weight off your feet
  2. Finish some lessons 5 minutes early to allow yourself breathing space or time to set up the next lesson
  3. Get out of your classroom at break and lunchtime. Go talk to some adults
  4. Be aware that the pupils are a bit more tired period 5 like you. Try not to lose your temper as a result of this tiredness
  5. Teaching is brilliant. Enjoying the lessons and enjoying being with the children makes it even more brilliant.

Working after 4:20 …. by @pjmerrell

Name: PJ Merrell
Twitter name: @pjmerrell
Sector: Secondary
Subject taught (if applicable): English
Position: Head of Sixth
What is your advice about? Working after 4:20 ….

  1. There is no prize for being the last person in school (nor the first one in). Go. Home.
  2. Avoid “taking your marking for a drive”. Piles of unmarked books in your boot are an unnecessary stress of an evening. If you HAVE to take work home, keep it sensible. And try not to do it at all!
  3. Have a cut off time for working each evening. Never work beyond that. Leave at least one day of the weekend completely work free.
  4. No-one ever died because they had to wait an extra week for work to be marked. No-one ever thinks burn out will happen to them. Until it does. Be kind to yourself.
  5. It’s oft stated but it’s true. Never spend longer marking working than they spent doing it. Reject rushed and shoddy work – do not cover it with suggestions.

Attacking the paperwork mountain by @JanBaker97

Name: Jan Baker
Twitter name: @JanBaker97
Sector: Secondary
Subject taught (if applicable): MFL
Position: Curriculum Leader
What is your advice about? Attacking the paperwork mountain

  1. You are still likely drown in paperwork once you start teaching even though we have email so you need a system of making it manageable.
  2. Don’t be afraid to use “file 13” – i.e. the bin. You don’t need to keep every piece of paper you are given.
  3. Ask yourself this question, “If I lost this bit of paper would it make me cry?” If the answer is yes, file it away safely immediately!
  4. Have an email system which makes retrieval easy. Use inbox sub-folders to sort emails by category e.g. NQT evidence, SEND pupils etc.
  5. Don’t forget to regularly de-clutter your email inbox. It’s worth it in the end! Save emails as word docs if you need to keep anything permanently.

Balancing work by @nickotkdV

Name: Nick Overton
Twitter name: @nickotkdV
Sector: Primary
Subject taught (if applicable): Primary
Position: Class teacher
What is your advice about? Balancing work.

  1. Have a cut off point that you do not work past. For me this is 8pm in the evening, if I have not computed the work by then I leave it for the next day.
  2. Make sure you have other non-school related activities planned. At the weekend, within the holiday, etc. make sure you have things booked that are not school related.
  3. Listen to your body and mind. If you are feeling unwell it is your body telling you you need to stop. Listen to it and stop. Unwell teachers are no use to students.
  4. Make sure you talk to colleagues. There are lots of resources out there that have already been made. Ask what the school has and you might find the resources you want. Talk.
  5. Sleep. Finally a stressed and tired teacher is not able to do their job effectively it efficently. Remember this is your bodies way of resting and recuperating. Listen to it.

Workload by @Bigkid4

Twitter name: @Bigkid4
Sector: Secondary
Subject taught (if applicable): Mathematics
Position: Teacher
What is your advice about? Workload

  1. Set yourself a sensible maximum number of hours you are willing to work. (mine is 50 hours per week)
  2. Take note of how many hours you are working and on what. Pay particular attention to how you are spending time outside of lessons and outside of school.
  3. Find out what the leadership want you to prioritise and as far as is possible fit that within your allotted time.
  4. If something cannot fit within the allotted time and is not a priority it probably isn’t worth doing.
  5. Report writing, mock exams and controlled assessments spring to mind as possible exceptions where the time limit could be exceeded. Allow a few exceptions but not many.