Our brand new #TeachingHero is @jesslucyleigh! Check out her inspiring advice below, and get in touch if you want to be featured yourself!
What motivates you to work hard? There is nothing more motivating than building relationships with young people and knowing you are making a difference to their lives. Some of our students do not have stable relationships in their personal lives, so being a constant safety net for our young people helps me get out of bed in the morning (even when I’ve had 2 hours sleep!)
Where do you go for personal and professional support or advice? Twitter is a huge support for me. Networking with likeminded people has really helped me. I have a small group of friends at work and we all meet at the end of the day and have a good vent. We also have a group chat which we use on a daily basis! I think the worst part of the profession is the rollercoaster of emotions every single day is. I can go to work in an amazing mood and leave in tears (and vice versa). The way I get through it is knowing that for some students, school is the safest place for them and I am partly responsible for that. That’s what makes me happy and content with my job. What strategies do you use to manage workload and protect your well being? To manage my workload, I ensure I have set time to do work. I block out my calendar and hide in classroom away from the hustle and bustle. I try to stay at work instead of bringing work home. Even if that means staying until 6pm. That means I don’t have to bring work home too often. When I do bring work home, I ensure that I do it early in the morning rather than late at night. There is nothing worse than work wizzing through your head at 11pm!! We finish work early on a Friday and our line managers always ensure we go home to enjoy our weekend. It is always something to look forward to during the week. What advice would you give anyone who felt like giving up? There are times that I feel like giving up but then I think about certain teachers that I’ll always remember, even now as an adult. I strive to be one of those that my students remember in years to come. It’s easier to be negative than it is to be positive sometimes. I always try to go to work with a smile even if I am crying inside. A student once told me that I always looked moody. I made it my mission to make sure I looked more positive and made a positive learning environment. There have been occasions when students/staff or even parents have made me cry. I have a little cry and then draw a line. Sometimes you can’t help but feel overwhelmed and you have to let yourself get upset once in a while. We’re all human after all.
Sum up our profession in 5 words. Amazing, exhausting, fulfilling, rewarding and emotional. But the best job EVER.