Thursday, 9 July 2009

A noisy life

So quiet on this blog for many weeks.
A month.
Quiet not because life has been quiet, nothing happening.
Quiet because life has been too noisy.

Noisy with ‘things to do’.
Noisy with ‘people to see’.

What is it about teaching that creates such panic as the end of the school year approaches? Why do we try to fit so much in?

Yes, the weather has something to do with it. This term we have had to cope with a seemingly endless cricket season. The hours the boys spend away from school almost, but not quite (I’m not that desperate) make me long for the football season. At least the matches are relatively short.

Just my class alone has had to fit in several trips – to our landfill and recycling sites (2 visits for them, 1 from me); to a concert; a fitness session; and a week away in England on a residential activity week.

Round the school, it has been the same, and more.

In school, we’ve had special assemblies, presentations, practices and rehearsals.

Out of school I’ve been on several day or half day courses. Fun, but a lot of work to prepare for my absence – far from ‘having a morning/day off’, it’s often easier just to stay in school and teach as normal.

All this is only the half of it. The time has disappeared in a blur. Life has been too noisy.

But… it’s holiday time now. If nothing else, it is a time to catch up on sleep and take a step back. Now life is not so noisy, I can see more clearly.

Hmmm – yes, I do like what I see!

PS - some reflections on our activity week away in Shropshire. Too busy to truly appreciate the scenery of this beautiful county on the Welsh Border...

Year 5 Activities Week: The Mathematics.

37 excited children + 4 excited teachers + 1,000,000 kg of luggage =
recipe for disaster - not really, I mean fun.
1 plane ride to Manchester. Duration: 1hour 15 minutes.
1 coach ride to RAF Cosford. Duration: Too long, we're all impatient.
2 fascinating hours spent looking at aeroplanes of all shapes and sizes.
1 activity centre arrived at, along with over 200 other children to play with on site.
37 boys in 4 small dormitory rooms.
15 different activities to do over the course of the week.
74 muddy trainers, 37 towels and hundreds of other assorted garments stuffed into the drying room after kayaking and canoeing.
360 arrows shot at 3 targets. 67 arrows missed completely. 21 arrows hit the bullseye.
1 climbing wall climbed up.
1 abseiling wall abseiled down.
4 tiring games of water polo played.
8 survival shelters built out of logs, branches, tarpaulins, ropes and leaves. 8 fires built and lit.
1 underground maze, 10 lost boys. 0 panic.
15 obstacles to be climbed up, over, down, round and through.
Countless rope ladders and bridges climbed up and along.
Hundreds of sweets from the Victorian sweet shop eaten in the Victorian village.
Approximately 20 pieces of unclaimed clothing left at the end of the week. (This is an amazingly low number!)
1 minor injury - a badly burst blister bravely born.
Countless examples of thoughtful and caring behaviour.
Countless hours of fun and games.
37 ecstatic children, 4 exhausted teachers, 999,999 kg of luggage = Year 5 2008 safely returned home.

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