IT’S beginning to look a lot like Christmas – except it isn’t.
January is once again upon us, and in the words of Bing Crosby (or Michael Bublé for those younger than 25), “Mom and Dad can hardly wait for school to start again.”
But, in this bleakest of months, when school practically starts and finishes in the dark, back to school blues have set in, certainly for teachers and school staff.
They know what a nightmare these coming weeks will be. The children don’t want to be back at school, and why would they?
They have spent the best part of two weeks lying around in their pyjamas, (although to be fair, so have most of the teachers), eating a load of junk and having no clear bedtime routine.
Here, our secret school secretary, who works in a primary school in Yorkshire, reveals why the January blues hit teachers hardest…
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CONCENTRATION IS DWINDLING
One of the main hurdles teachers will have to overcome is trying to hold their students’ attention.
After all, what have the children done with their time off? Watched YouTube videos and lounged around in bed mainly, especially the secondary students.
Teachers must compete with videos that only last 5 minutes, while at the same time dealing with sugar deprived students who haven’t had their hands in the Quality Street box for an hour and who have got used to having a nap in the afternoon, as if they were 3 years old.
They are tired, hungry, and in no mood for lessons.
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The sparkle of Christmas, and the excitement of preparing for Santa (for those who still believe), seems so very long ago.
SPOILT KIDS ARE SHOW OFFS
One other thing that is guaranteed is teachers having to try and curb the inevitable, endless,
conversations about what everyone got for Christmas, students each trying to out-do their peers.
Whatever happened to being happy with what your parents were able to get you?
Nowadays it’s not deemed a successful Christmas unless your entire wish-list is in your stocking and documented in full on social media.
PRECIOUS PRESENTS ARE A NIGHTMARE
Worse than this, school staff must be constantly vigilant due to the students bringing their new stuff into school with them.
Top of range phones, coats, watches and jewellery all make an appearance.
And woe betide something gets lost or broken (which it most certainly will), as the blame will come firmly down on school, whatever no phone / no jewellery policy may be in place.
Parents, please teach your children about being responsible for their property; either that or don’t allow them to take a £900+ phone into school that WILL get smashed!
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ROUTINE? WHAT ROUTINE?
Another problem teachers face is trying to get students back into a routine.
Too many children will have spent the holidays with no clear boundaries; no set expectations, going to bed when they want, and generally having 2 weeks of lazing around – possibly the same as the adults in the house!
Unfortunately, back into school – and into work – means no more doing what you want, when you want, and it can take some children a little while to get back into the rhythm of school life.
For all the students (and teachers!) that don’t want to be in school, there are always some that want to be there, and many more that need to be back.
Back to school blues have set in, certainly for teachers and school staff
Whether it is for the routine where there is none at home, or simply to be able to be warm and have a free meal, school can be a lifeline for some students, and this can be forgotten in the excitement of school holidays and Christmas.
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A staggering number of children in the UK will not have had a Christmas this year and it is important to remember that school is a safe space for them.
From our sugar-high Christmas break we now come crashing down into a brand-new term…are you ready teachers? Mum and Dad definitely are!
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