Some thoughts from a teacher in the early stages of her career. Inspired by all the great edubloggers out there!

Tabula Rasa

Like all professions, education is full of terrible leaders. There are lots of good ones out there, but a cursory glance at the odd teacher blog, or a tiptoe into the average staff room, would tell you that there are a lot of teachers who don’t really rate the people who lead them.

In the past, I have written about what I termed the ‘Bowling Ball’ approach to leadership. This particular leadership style is embodied by those leaders who take no responsibility for the failings of the school, but instead pass blame down the ranks towards the teachers, bashing them to smithereens on the way. This is not good for lots of reasons. Staff feel disempowered and less invested in the school; they lose confidence and are less likely to want to work hard; they sometimes become negative and complain. People need to feel like the people who lead them…

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Angry. So very angry.

I’m tempted to do one of these myself!


I thought it would be nice to say a little thank you to the good ones. I’ve had some absolutely shocking teachers in my time (my secondary English teacher laughed in my face when I signed up for A level lit) but some absolute gems. I will share the good, the bad and the ridiculous. I think the collection sums up the quirks, spirals and highlights of education!

Mrs Muchall

From Guyana so an instant hit with my educationally suspicious West Indian father, this woman was amazing. I had a reading age of 10 at 5 and she would take me out of class reading to let me read the Hobbit out loud to her. She was the kindest lady on the planet and I don’t remember her with anything but a smile on her face.

Mr Baker

Now, if you want to be the most cool of all the…

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An excellent piece – I recognise both myself and my friends in this description!


I know a teacher. You’ll know her too, or someone very similar to her. She works hard; she does not have her work in balance with her life; she loves her job; she is bloody good at it. Know the one? Apparently the DfE doesn’t, or they wouldn’t be insulting her with their disingenuous promises on workload.
How best to describe this teacher? In her 3rd year of teaching, she has no paid responsibilities beyond her classroom, she is not on UPR, she is mainscale in old money. As such, she teaches 25 of 30 lessons across Key Stages 3, 4 and 5. She has a form whom she cares for as individuals, calling their mums, addressing their worries. She had parents’ evening last week, one of the 6 she will attend this year. She has a ‘data entry window’ to meet by Thursday – as she does every half…

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The Primary Lie

I completely agree with the primary parents evening!

The Diary of a Not So Ordinary Boy

Or, things ain’t what they used to be.

I went to a parents’ evening the other night.  It’s not usually something I look forward to, seeing as there is too much hanging around sitting on too-small chairs for my liking, but I was keen to go to this one.  This one was my first as the parent of a mainstream secondary school child.  And I was impressed.

The chairs were the right size, there were plenty of people shuttling around who I knew from toddler group days (oh, my, haven’t they grown), the heating was on nice and high (a little too high in one room) and, joy of joys, not every teacher was younger than me.  (When we went to have a look round it was rather disconcerting to find myself a good fifteen years older than some of the young whippersnappers who have the temerity to work there.)…

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I do something similar but like the idea of turning it into a more permanent reminder with the stars.


Niamh Brewer explains how she creates a culture of success with her English groups.

Golden Example Photo

In a school where there are already brilliant schemes in place to encourage excellent work, I wanted to inject something different into my English lessons. As many English teachers will be aware, seeing students between three and five times a week has both its strong points and its draw backs, and as an NQT with a top set Year 10 class I was struggling to motivate them in their essay writing. Having witnessed it in play during a PGCE placement, I decided to introduce the ‘golden example’ into my classroom. Essentially, I photocopy the ‘best’ essay in the class onto gold (well, yellow) paper and distribute it to the rest of the class as an exemplar of what to do well. I then ask the whole class to read it, and to consider how it compares with…

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PE and Sport has been under the spotlight this week and has been making headlines.

Sport England launched its THIS GIRL CAN campaign, to help persuade more women to adopt lifelong sporting habits. Through their research they have identified that less women participate in sport and physical activity than men, but a significant amount would want to get involved, but don’t due to a number of key issues.  My initial thoughts of the advert were positive. Something that made being active and playing sport look good, no matter what size and shape your body. A campaign that potentially doesn’t shame or exclude women, but empowers them. I thought it tackles some of the key issues which prevent women from taking part in sport; body image, self confidence, sport being a man dominated environment and clothes and equipment. However some critics of the campaign, make an excellent point, that once again it’s about…

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