Monday, 28 May 2012

TheTimes they are a-Changing . . .


Three years ago, after an accident stopped my teaching career in its tracks, I needed a different focus - something to do when my health was okay, all my Mum activities and chores were done or I was just soooo ready to do something else just for my own sanity -  a change from ironing and playing shop!

And so, I began writing a children's novel. Last year, my children's novel, Driftwood and Amethyst, was published and I began promoting it around local schools and bookshops. This blog has been following this process alongside my recovery and more recently  follows my return to work through voluntary and supply teaching and the continuation of my writing. Finding a way to work again after so long away from the chalkface is certainly a challenge in itself and my blog charts how I manage being a mum, a writer, a returning-to-work teacher and an eternal optimist!
Supply teaching is proving to be a real baptism by fire as working with a class of children who don't know you for half a day or a full day is very different to managing your own class over one academic year. It just takes a little more of my fiesty side and a no nonsense approach, yet it still can be very rewarding as students very quickly learn who they trust and respect, which is conveyed through the way they respond to you and want to share their own worries or successes with you.
Today has been a real whirlwind of Rumble in the Jungle, poetry and rhymes, number lines and addition challenges and playground games. A day full of chanting, reciting, story telling, acting, role play and good fun outside on a rare school field with cool downs under the shady trees before home time. Funnily enough, the behaviour management gets easier as the children find that by towing the line they get to have a great time!
Picking up my children from a friend,who'd kindly offered to watch them after school for half an hour until I got home, was another fabulous first today. The boys quite like the fact that Mum's a teacher 'again' and just want me to teach at their school. That would be nice!

So now, after such a lovely day, I think I will focus on The Plot this evening for an hour or so. The writing I've done today has inspired my socks off. It may not be so great when I go back to it, but at least it's down and ready for the next step. The edit.

I'm always invigorated by the writing I manage to do, as writing is not the easiest way to spend my days. I often liken writing to going to the gym - I warm up begrudgingly, I work out oblivious to the passing of time, I cool down again, amazed I managed to focus for any amount of time. But so glad I did. So glad.

With less opportunity to write now I'm starting back at work, my writing time will be much more precious. I welcome this next chapter of my life with open arms. Getting back in to teaching has been a long time coming and a fightworth fighting for, I'm sure of that. Supply teaching will afford me the financial security I need and the rest time I must allow myself as I get back up to speed. My writing will continue alongside my time in school, be that part time or full time. I write to inspire children and I teach to inspire children so it's all good.
Onwards and upwards once more. Onwards and upwards!


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