Showing posts with label sickness. Show all posts
Showing posts with label sickness. Show all posts

Friday, August 8, 2008

Newby teachers, sickness and tolerance levels

The first two years are the worst I'm told. Being in contact with 150 kids or so with variable hygeine habits over the course of a week means that you face a lot of potential sick leave. After those first two years, your immune system (I'm told) kicks into hyperdrive and you stop getting sick.

I hope so. I'm so sick of being sick. Never enough to take a day off.. Just enough to make your nose run, throat sore and generally turn me into a REALLY grumpy person. That's not to say I'm especially pleasurable to be around at the best of times but when sick my tolerance drops to near zero. When in the workforce my staff knew this and would stay clear and (on occassion) appeal to higher authorities to send me home. I would tell them to get stuffed too.

Unfortunately our little darlings can't do that. Other new teachers are much more pragmatic and just stay home if they are sick. I find though that the preparation of relief and clean up in the aftermath is just never worth it.. I'm better sick with kids I understand than dropping a relief in with limited maths knowledge or with limited preparation(<24hrs). I'm a hopeless relief in (insert subject here) and know it. It takes me well into a term to establish a rapport that works with my teaching style - without that rapport it's a case of tell them how mean I am and scowl a lot. Generally that's not near optimal learning.

I'm Mr calm 99.5% of the time, but if a student has been putting effort over a long period of time firing me up.. this is prime time where they might meet the person who explains to them that they've finally given me a little more than I'll accept. Very honest, very public, very abrupt and to the point - typical math teacher style.

The responses vary from 'ok I'll pull my head' in to 'I'll tell my mum'. I don't mind what the response is as long as the message is clear. Yr10/11/12 students have a clear choice - work in school or work towards employment. There are now a heap of options other than come to school and make life difficult for other students and the teacher. Education in school is the right of all students and a few ratbags do not have the right to disrupt the rights of many. Allowing them to do so reduces teaching to low quality child care.

When my tolerance levels are low.. WATCH OUT!

Oh.. and some good/bad news today. 12 of my top 14 students elected to try two stream maths. Sadly, their progress in their exam when reviewed by the head of department indicated that only 8 would make it. That's probably not going to be enough for it to run despite all their work. It does say that the message of 'trying' and believing in yourself is getting through. Well done guys!