Today I had my first termly review. I have to say I felt the more tired than I have all term. Teaching is a profession in which it’s very tempting easy to run on empty for weeks and weeks and it’s always on the days when I am out of class that I realise how run-down I am both mentally and physically!
Looking through my journal and progress tracker I was surprised to realise that we are already nearly two-thirds of the way through our PGCE. I have now taught approximately 357.5 hours of teaching time, my class are already on their second topic books of the year and my journal binder has broken due to the wear and tear of 11 weeks of reflection. It was a strange feeling to look at the folders of evidence in front of me, the sheer volume of paper was surprising and far exceeds any of the folders I kept at university.
However, the reality of working full-time and studying is that you put a lot of pressure on yourself. I feel that I am in constant negotiation with myself, weighing up which tasks are a priority and which are not. The past weeks of essay deadlines, assessment weeks, parents’ evenings and open days have meant that my hours have become longer and longer. It is very hard to switch off at home and sometimes I even have dreams that I am teaching the next day of lessons!
What has surprised me most though is how much starting my working life has changed my outlook on life. At university I found it incredibly hard to motivate myself to wake up before 8:00 A.M. but knowing I need to be somewhere by 7:30 A.M. has made me appreciate the time I have each day. There are so many things I want to fit into each day. Now I just need to work out how to get that work life balance just right!