Tuesday, January 29, 2008

Happy New School Year!

First day at new school today, thankfully without the kids! The place is very well organised and I have got an overly organised and generous mentor. Yep, they give you someone to latch onto when you start at the school no matter how long you have been teaching. The differences are amazing. I think it's the little thoughtful things that have blown me away as I compare the two places. Things like ordering extra diaries to cover new staff. Printing out course outlines for each class so that they are common across the department, with things to do and a test built around each chapter. You are part of 3 teams so you will always have someone to talk to. My mentor helped me get all the textbooks I need out of the library and a tub to carry my stuff around in. He is so organised and has organised to take care of myself and another girl just starting.

Admittedly things were great, or so I thought, when I started at the place we don't mention so I don't want to put the mozz on but there is a marked difference in planning and documentation of teaching practice that did not exist there.

Today the worry of teaching tomorrow has outstripped my recent constant companion - worry about having to move house by 25th Feb and not having found anywhere yet! YAY... umm, I think.

Wish me luck and nice year 7s!

Monday, January 28, 2008

Phase 2

I start at a new school tomorrow! It is a mainstream high school out in outer suburbia surrounded by McMansions. It is an expanding area with a mix of huge houses, industry and bugger all public transport. Nearest train line is 7km away! I am also in the process of looking for a new flat which is far more stressful than the new job.

In term 4 I had a high success rte of applications to interviews but no jobs from it. I started panicking as the summer holidays were drawing to a close as fast as my bank account was! I did many applications, ok not the hundreds I have heard about some people doing but it felt like a lot. I liked the decisiveness of the school I will be at. They emailed me and asked if I could come in the next day for an interview at 1030. By midday they had called me for the job... and it turns out they didn't even call my referees! Either they liked me or they were desperate... probably both. I will be teaching science and math. The math could be interesting as I have a year 11 class!

I think Wednesday, when the kids get back will be a real culture shock for me. The school is huge with more staff than there were students at my last school! The import thing will be how it feels with the staff. It will be very new for me and in the interview they sounded like they have lots of support systems to help teachers and lots of young staff. I really missed that at the last school, it will be good to have people to make mistakes with and who are at the same place in their lives and careers. (The staffroom has a pool table!).

Teaching teenagers is what I wanted to do in the beginning. They are not cute and I will not love them. I am sure I will care about them but do not expect the same attachment that made my last job so emotionally difficult. They will not need me and may not even like me and will not have to see them all day every day. This will be able to be a job for me rather than take over my life. I'm not saying I don't think it will be hard work but it will be less emotional work and in the end that should make a big difference. I am concerned that I won't be great at it but I can just be the best I can. People said I was good at special ed and I worry I won't be as good at teaching in this environment. At least I know I'm good at flying by the seat of my pants so I should manage ok. (...and the school has a swimming pool. They open it to staff before school 3 days a week!)

I will try to blog regularly again as this begins. It has been instructional reading the decent from excitement and enthusiasm to stress and depression. It's like seeing my life from the outside and I wonder how the hell I could have let it go on so long. I am hoping this job will be one that even if it doesn't turn out great I can stay until I find somewhere else to try... preferably in the Northern suburbs. I am trying to believe in right time right place that what has happened will be where I am meant to be. I have also had a few more phone calls about interviews but they just took too long. I have been watching Summer Heights High whilst ironing to relearn high school... 1. I am only ironed for the first couple of weeks to make a good impression 2. SHS isn't funny it is real.

So how do I feel? OK. I will probably be nauseous tomorrow but it will work out fine.

It could even be great.