I spent about 10 years teaching in London schools, first as a Religious Education Teacher, then for the most part as Head of Drama - Drama being the subject I’m most passionate about. In this time I’ve taught in a real range of schools for private independent prep schools to tough challenging high schools. At times during my teaching career, it was incredibly intense. Children can sense your insecurity, uncertainty and often use as it unfortunately as an opportunity to undermine you and go a little wild. But I slowly came to learn that it was often the children that gave me the hardest time that needed my support and attention the most.
Through trial and error, I realised, that no matter how demanding the class, how bad the reputation of the school, if you’re consistent in your teaching, and behavior management policies, do your best, and love the children in your class - even the terrors - teaching in London is incredibly soul filling. I’m thankful to all the children, in all the classes I ever worked with - they taught me so much!
My advice for anyone new to teaching in London and even to seasoned veterans, is to hang in there, when you’re tired or when it’s mid-term and it feels like the paper work might drown you.
One last tip from me is to keep a photo or object on your desk that always reminds you of all the value you’re adding to young people’s lives, just by turning up and doing your best.