The Grapes of Learning

By |8 August 2022|Categories: Well-being|Tags: , , , |

  My grandfather grew grapes. Each Summer I stayed with him for a few weeks and amongst many compelling (to a young lad) grandfatherly tasks, he'd show me how to tend them, how to tie them into the roof of the greenhouse; and how to pick them. There always seemed to be so many, hanging down into the head space of the greenhouse, leaves illuminated with sunlight. I'm not sure what happened to them. Grandma maybe made jam (not wine, both members of the Temperance...and the Co-op). Or they were traded for other summer produce that their small garden hadn't [...]

Enemy of the Good

By |21 March 2022|Categories: Well-being|Tags: , , , , |

Le meglio è l'inimico del bene (Italian proverb). Perfect is the enemy of the good. I first heard this phrase only last week during an online briefing by the Sanctuary Foundation. Krish Kandiah and others set out the implications for opening our homes to Ukrainian (other other) refugees. "Don't let the perfect be the enemy of the good," he advised; in complexity don't aim for 'best' because 'best' doesn't exist. In chaos, good enough is good enough. Perfection is a powerful motivation but an elusive aspiration. It drives us forward on a journey of better towards a destination of best. [...]

Weary, Exhausted AND Effective

By |14 February 2022|Categories: Well-being|Tags: , , |

Ministry of Learning Briefing 02/22/A17: The Ministry of Learning would like to thank you for your dedication, resilience, creativity and problem solving over the last two years. We recognise that COVID-19 still presents significant operational challenges but we are incredibly impressed with how you respond to this. You must feel a little weary, overwhelmed, exhausted? If you do, we admire your professionalism, turning up, day after day for the last two years, keeping learning going. You deserve a rest, a recharge, a chance to reflect. You are amazing. The nation is lucky to have you. It's great to receive praise [...]

How to Make Time (2 minute read)

By |19 January 2022|Categories: Well-being|Tags: , , |

Time management guru Brian Tracey (Eat That Frog, 2001) says that, even on our deathbeds, we'll have at least 300 hours of stuff left to do. Personally I hope that's chores like mowing the lawn rather than treats like catching up with an old friend from primary school. I'll keep this post short - so you can use the 30 seconds you'd spend reading a longer one on something else. Time as a reason or excuse "And what barriers might we face in adopting this new initiative/ strategy/ pedagogy/ marking system/ phonics programme etc.?", asked the leader, consultant, trainer and [...]

Well-being in a Single Word

By |13 October 2021|Categories: Well-being|Tags: , |

  "I would be a whole lot more effective in my job without Ofsted looming." - anonymous (obviously) words from a wonderful headteacher I work alongside. Sometimes the observer negatively affects the quality of the very system they hope to improve, simply by observing it. Or threatening to, at 24 hrs notice. However, this post is not an Ofsted critique. Plenty of time for that later, believe me, it's coming. No, this is about a single word for managing the stress and anxiety which, for many of the professionals I know, is embodied in the anticipation of inspection; is compounded [...]

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