Good Luck hen, you’ll need it.

“Good luck hen. You’ll need it.”

Still makes me howl with laughter every time I think of one of my trainee teachers saying this to me as I arrived to assess him.

The smile and enthusiasm was infectious.

Enthusiasm and passion will take you a long way but knowing what you are doing with the wee people is what it is all about. I mean, Really knowing

“Take the time to learn your craft and never try to tell others about something you know hee haw about”

It was put to me a tad more eloquently but as a young teacher, my jedi master MG reigned me right in.

As a teacher and a mammy, I have seen the pressure put on teachers to go bigger, better, Twitter,blog, Instagram….going to be honest….it’s not a competition. The pressure put on parents to be healthier, more exotic, glossier and so interesting you need to document the buying of the pak choi at the local organic pop up store is tremendous.

Says the maw who was rushing to drop the wee lady at breakfast club at 7.55 am -She was eating a piece on chocolate spread, I was doing the mammy lick trying to get it off her face, running into the shop to buy her the juice for lunch and lo and behold….a good morning from her head teacher.


Doesn’t make me less of a mum, but years tells me a quick piece will not kill her, a mammy lick to the face will not kill her. However, it’s not an Instagram moment. Doesn’t make it any less of a mammy daughter relationship.

In short, Just because teachers are not documenting every activity in their class, documenting their free time being spent at CPD every evening, doesn’t make them less of a teacher. I’ve mentioned before about the realisation that I wasn’t a “young”teacher when I was told “nae offence but we are looking for a younger teacher” was quite stark. Just because I’m indeed the other side of 40 does that make me the wrong one?

There was a wonderful article about a more experienced teacher offering to help an NQT in the TES a while ago that struck home. The NQT didn’t need any help thank you, technology, Pinterest and twinkled up to the eyeballs. Didn’t last.

Passion turned to burn out.

It’s heartbreaking. However are we creating a culture where that’s the norm?

The Jedi master told me I couldn’t be all things to all people. She told me to focus on my craft.

To paraphrase St.Elvis Presley, a little less competition, a little more teaching…..



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