I haven't blogged for a while, I'm a bit out of practice. Work (as many of you know) has been terrible but I am finally 'out of there' and starting a new job on the 6th of January. I am relieved, happy, sad and terrified all rolled into one! At the time it was best to keep myself to myself and not blog about things that were getting so awful....I wasn't sure it would help and sympathy wasn't what I needed. I concentrated on getting the new role and it paid off.
So here is my bash at #Nurture1314 as suggested by @ChocoTzar...I did one last year so I guess a good place to start is there....with the things I said I would do.
Fit and slim....no (failed due to a long standing back issue)
Care less about others and what they think......check. For now at least.
Worry less and be a leader....getting there
Enjoy vegetables....work in progress
Find a NSEW Speaker.....done!
Balance better.....hope to in the new role
Attend a teachmeet....oh yes!
Career thoughts.....a plan is formulating
Besties....not really but we talk more on the phone
So I had a reasonably successful 2013 it would appear, I set out to achieve some things and managed 8 completely! I'm quite pleased really, having got lost in the mire of a difficult school in a difficult situation it was totally lost on me what I have actually achieved. I sit here with a smile ready to do it all over again.
So here goes the lists:
13 Great things in 2013 in no particular chronological order
1. Buying a house! Oh yes we did! Not moved in yet but we should be completing and exchanging in the next few weeks. It's a proper project house which will be fun. Can't wait to get painting!
2. Accepting a new challenge. After nearly 4 years working in the SEN sector which I have absolutely loved and would recommend to anyone (if you want to know whether you can teach or not, work in a BESD school - they vote with their feet!) it was time to say goodbye and accept a new challenge. I was approached by a mainstream school head of science who I know well who was desperate for a 2i/c who could do the job. She said did I fancy it and I said yes without too much hesitation. It's going to be a real challenge to adjust back into mainstream life (lots of kids, big classes, girls, marking lots) but I think it will be worth it and is the right decision for me to move into the future.
3.Ofsted - back in January I was Ofsteded all by myself as they came and did a subject survey of science at my school. Terrifying but rewarding for me. I was told I, and the department was good with outstanding features and the work I did would be featured in Ofsted's national review of science in special schools. A year down the line and I have seen no report however I blogged about the experience at the time so you can read for yourselves.
4. CSciTeach and ASE website. As a result of going to the ASE Conference in January I applied for CSciTeach though was not sure I would get it....but I did! I've just filled in my paperwork in order to keep it so fingers crossed. My new role will also provide plenty of evidence for this once I get started! I was also contacted by the ASE about some of my literacy blog being used on their website in the new members area....still waiting to hear about this but it is happening!
5. Teachmeet Clevedon - was awesome! It was great to see so many people there and meet many twitter people face to face. Can't wait to see @hrogerson, @KDWScience @lizdudley and many others again. On top of that the keynote was delivered by @HYWEL_ROBERTS who is brilliant, if you haven't read his 'Ooops' book yet where have you been?!?!?
6. Working with another school was a success this year. Through the academy chain of my special school I did some work supporting science in another special school in Dursley. We talked through what they wanted and needed much of which I was able to provide there and then to support. It's nice to know my hard work is appreciate is 2 parts of the country.
7. Going to the US of A and Canada in the summer holidays was a great experience and a very relaxing break. Go to Niagara Falls it is the most amazing place (Canada side obviously)
8. Respect from SLT....something I was struggling to gain but was never sure why. It took me to hand in my notice for them to realise quite what I was doing and what they were losing. It should not have come to that and serves as a warning to any current or potential SLT, don't forget how hard people work in the background to keep a school running day to day, if you do you might lose a good thing.
9. Mentoring 2 student teachers has been very rewarding for me this year and successful. I feel as if it affirmed the fact that I knew what I was doing and was in a position to help them with their individual needs.
10. Being me and being OK with that. Not much to add here, but I sure feel better.
11. Growing my hair has been a long drawn out challenge and seems silly listed here but the number of times I nearly gave in and went in for the 'crop.' Right now I have a very short bob like mess....some way to go yet!
12. Taking my meds and feeling better. Now my meds are sorted out dosage wise and timing wise I feel so much better in myself. I'm hoping to come off of them slowly as next year progresses but with the new job and house move I'm concerned about doing too much too soon. I intend to keep a positive diary about good things that happen everyday to try and focus on the positive and not get down about things.
13. My friend's baby son. He is awesome and has removed a lot of my baby fear. For a while I was scared to even hold a small baby so being around him has really helped. Silly, but at nearly 32 quite important.....
14 Hopes for 2014 (harder this!)
1. Blog more! In my new role I will likely have lots more to blog about whilst continuing my interest in all things SEN and BESD. As a 2i/c science I am going to be working with less experienced staff to bring them on as well as develop new Key Stage 3 science curriculum ready for September - busy times!
2. Meet up with Twitter friends including @kohlmand who is local to me and @Gwenelope cus we said we really should.
3. Become a successful leader in my new role. This is going to take time and I know I am going to make mistakes at times. That's OK, I'm not perfect! I'm learning this slowly but really want to make a success of this new job.
4. Decorate the house without going broke! Obvious but let's see....the o/h has plans for expensive kitchens and taking walls down :)
5. Get fit and slim...yeah again. Might stand more of a chance as there is a gym on site at my new school.
6. Be published somewhere as me, not the pseudonym. The ASE approaching me about using my ideas on their website has given me confidence in what I am doing online and I really hope that some opportunities might come my way to be published someday.
7. Eat better...she says whilst munching on Maltesers. Let's get rid of all the Christmas goodies first but I might try a bit of this 5-2 diet along with the Hairy Dieters books (again if you want low calorie tasty food the recipes in those are fab!)
8. Go to more Teachmeets, maybe even present. I need to get to more Teachmeets locally this year and do some local networking. I think this will be easier now I am back in the mainstream sector....people might be more willing to listen/talk.
9. Use my camera properly including the manual mode. Now I have a full DSLR camera I need slowly learn how to use it properly. It's great fun trying out different things.
10. Carry on with #TwitterCoaching with @Mat6453. #TwitterCoaching was started by @ASTsupportAAli and seems to be a great success. Mat and I have chatted about the new role and intend to chat more once I've got a handle of what I'm doing. It's nice to chat to someone impartial and professional who knows what you're going through.
11. Use the ideas from Twitter and everywhere else stored in Dropbox and Pocket. I've got lots of ideas stored away which I want to try. Foldables being right at the top of the list.
12. iPad. I get one of these gadgets with my new role and need some lessons in how it can help me both in organisation, apps and in the classroom. 1 device in the classroom limits the options but I want to explore what it can do and have fun doing it.
13. Go to more concerts and theatre because we all need a bit of culture in our lives. I love watching concerts as I play in them it's great to see it from the other side.
14. Don't want to jinx it but....who knows what might happen next year?! After all we have bought a house.... ;)
Happy New Year to readers new and old.
I really hope to pick up my blogging and 'join in' more next year. #ASEChat has also been neglected along with this blog but I look forward to 'working with' you all in the New Year. For now, there are guests arriving in T-minus 3 hours....best get cooking and cleaning :)