Invigilating: good time to write an adventure

23rd May 2003 at 01:00
DO you find yourself waving a finger at children who misbehave in public? Do you find it difficult to find a name for your own child, because they all remind you of someone you've taught?

Do you collect bits of tin foil, sweet wrappers and pine cones?

If you said yes to all three, you are displaying the telltale signs of working in education, according to 100 Essential Lists for Teachers.

The book, by Duncan Grey, head of resources at Hinchingbrooke school, Cambridgeshire, contains advice on vital issues such as coping with interviews, inspections and internet safety.

But it also has lists on more trivial topics. Ways Of Staying Alert While Invigilating Exams, for example, suggests bored test-watchers plan an adventure story beginning: "If I had not gone into teaching..."

For those desperate to escape shifts in sweaty exam halls the list on excessive workload reminds teachers that routine invigilation is a task from which the workload agreement should free them.

There are also:

* Fifteen useless things pupils excel at: dismantling pens, chewing gum, rocking on chairs.

* Useful Latin phrases: fac ut gaudeam (make my day) and magister mundi sum (I am master of the universe).

* What the head really means to say: this is a bold and courageous strategy (I know it's going to be painful and crazy).

* What we really mean when we say: satisfactory progress (who is this child? I can't think of anything to say about himher). Easy-going (has done no work at all). Doing exceptionally well (delightful child, mother is governors' chair).

Then there are the Signs you have become bitter and twisted and it's time to go - such as calling Year 10 the fourth year.

"100 Essential Lists for Teachers", Continuum Books, pound;5.99

Friday, 24

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