60 Reasons Why I'm Sticking With Teaching

It may sound funny to title this '60 reasons why I'm sticking with teaching' when I am still just a trainee. Many may think it is silly as I am not yet qualified and I have a large hellish world ahead of me or simply that why would I need to stick to something I haven't fully experienced yet. The reason for this post is down to all of the posts I see every day slapped all over Facebook, Twitter and education sections of news sites where fully qualified and ex teachers tell their stories of why they are leaving the profession. For a while I was quite obsessed by articles of such stories, instead of the posts driving my motivation to teach it did quite the opposite and it made me question exactly what I had spent the last three years training for if I am going into a job that will drive me to stress and depression.

Naively I did not even think that despite seeing these articles shared all over social media that these were just posts from a very small number and compared to the number of teachers in the UK, these stories were and are coming from an extremely small percentage of teachers. They made me think, and think a lot. The pure negativity of teaching in the posts have now converted into more motivation and have made me think more carefully about the little things that I appreciate in 'every day teaching' - the things that make the majority of us stick it out and actually love the job many of us have dreamt of since childhood.

On the 8th of September 2014 I started my fourth year and final placement, with 12 weeks (60 days) in school I decided that I would keep track of a small enjoyment or buzz I get out of this incredible job each day. I started this as a personal list/diary to look back at when the placement going gets tough but thought I may as well share it for others to view and maybe even contribute!


60 reasons why I'm sticking with teaching...

1) for the first day butterflies (for everyone) and the sight of bright new pencil cases with the smell of fresh rubber and lead.

2) for the staff room laughter when other teachers share stories of their mornings when 6 year olds write about their new pair of 'tits' with the reminder to start 'igh' in phonics ASAP.

3) for the subtle slip of a small warm hand into yours on the walk to assembly.

4) for the pure energy and excitement you can see written all over a child's face when showing you a piece of completed work they are really proud of.

5) for Lego - a fantastic educational resource for KS1 construction (and behaviour management bribery).

6) for courses with unlimited tea and coffee.

7) when hearing "mum! mum!" then turning around to an embarrassed little red face asking for numeracy help (quite a compliment really).

8) for being able to add hairdressing and styling to your CV whenever plaits, buns and pony tails fall out after PE.

9) stepping back to view your new display and realising that all of that cutting, mounting and laminating was worth it.

10) for fridays...

11) for the humongous deal of being gifted with Elsa's magic powers in the playground version of 'Frozen'.

12) for all of the great things kids say.. "Mummy cut my hair, she can paint hair as well, but she said I can only have my hair painted when I am older, that is when I can wear my juicy lipstick too" (5 year old in the playground).

13) for meeting lovely and appreciative parents.

14) for staff rooms full of Cath Kidston.

15) for being able to share experiences.

16) for always having a great answer when non-teachers ask what you got up to today (today - teddy bears picnic)

17) for being an entertainer every day and hearing soft giggles from a carpet full of 5 year olds.

18) "I love you Miss Douglas"

19) for how quickly and willing the children suddenly are to tidy the classroom when they see the sticker book come out.

20) for a simple song in assembly launching you right back 16 years to when you were sat on a similar cold sticky floor..

21) for the wet eyes and cheeks and you can so easily dry.

22) for the pure novelty of having your own name on a sheet of stickers.

22) for the pure novelty of having your own name on a sheet of stickers.

23) for the dreamy children that never make a fuss.

24) for the fussy ones that you strangely miss when they are absent for the day.

25) for little heads full of creativity and imagination (and possibly nits..).

26) for the tears, the tantrums and triumphs.

27) for the innocence and belief of young minds.

28) for those days with more drama than the Globe.

29) for moments like this... (I'll set the scene here - sat working with two guided groups during my University tutor's observation when one of my year 1's runs into the classroom shouting...)

Year 1 child:  "Miss Douglas! Miss Douglas!! The boys outside keep saying the F word!"

Me: "The F word?!!! Well, thank you for telling me, that definitely shouldn't be happening in our lovely class, can you whisper in my ear the word you heard them using?"

Year 1 child: "fart."

30)  for when that light bulb just lights up inside their heads!

31) for the invention of the travel mug - getting us all through the last week before half term.

32) for the critical investigations children undertake when you have been away from the classroom for only 30 minutes.

33) for naïvety and being constantly asked if the man in the suit at the back observing my lesson is my Dad in school for the day..

34) for the children that roll up along side you like cats in the playground.

35) for the very necessary half term breaks.

36) for sweet nature, when children act mesmerised by something you know you are definitely bad at (singing...)

37) for a job where the smiles of little ones light up the classroom on the most cold and darkest days.

38) because spending a good hour in Hobby Craft is more acceptable as a teacher.

39) for those unintentional rude misspellings..

40) for continuing to learn about new things and understanding those bits that you found hard as a child by teaching them to your pupils in a new way.

41) for the moments when a struggling child has a breakthrough.

42) "Miss Douglas, did you know that after you get married you get a free baby?!!" (5 year old's are great)

43) for wet paper towels, they solve all.

44) for having the huge 'room full for 5 & 6 year olds' excuse to start all things Christmas amazingly early.

45) for the fact that I may not have a tissue to hand in my bag however I do have a full set of Berol Broad felt tips, a reward sticker pack, and some multilink...

46) for the fantastic variants of what you once thought was a simple teaching name..

47) for the 'shows' in  'Show & Tell' AKA I forgot it was on so lets see what I can find in my tray.. cue 5 children presenting how wonderful the school head lice letter they just received is..

48) for the 'tells' in 'Show & Tell' where one child excitedly talks about their new baby cousin in the family and how funnily enough a lot of other family members have been busy as the next 6 or so children in the circle also have new baby cousins.. hmm..

49) for the special belief in Father Christmas.

50) for reaching milestones that shows hard work definitely pays off, for teacher and for pupil.

51) for singing, singing and more guilt-free Christmas singing!

52) for working with very supportive, like minded people.

53) for cool school trips and for anti-sickness bands actually working for once.

54) for the children who tell all of the bad jokes.

55) for mini whiteboards, the saviour of all.

56) for 'donkey singing practice' being a legitimate appointment on your daily calendar (the nativity).

57) for the look on a child's face when you show them the few words they could only write 12 weeks ago compared to the page of full sentences they are now writing. Priceless and lovely to see.

58) for Christmas cards like this...

59) for even more excuses to spend all evening scanning Pinterest.

60) for realising how great the job is when farewells are so difficult.

60 days of placement complete. I can only be honest and say that on some of these days I found it very difficult to name a reason, other days four or five reasons came easily. Many people are different with the way they work but for me reflection is highly important, this simple blog post has really motivated me to carry on and is definitely something I can refer back to in the future.

Thank you for all the lovely comments about this post, I'm glad it has brought some others a little bit of happiness.

On to the next adventure..

Twitter: @MegDouglasTeach


  1. Hi Megan. Love this post! It really is the little things that make it what it is. Might have to steal this idea for the future! ;)

    1. Thanks Kate! Exactly! Go for it, it would be nice to make a collection! I'd love to know what other little things people appreciate too! :)

  2. This is so wonderful!
    I've just started my PGCE/Schools Direct year at Plymouth, only 2 weeks in & I'm loving it already!
    I'm looking forward to reading more posts :)

    1. Thanks Kelly! Good luck, I hope it goes well! Definitely worth it :)

  3. Wonderful and a nice reminder after a hard term x

  4. It's not difficult to write a post on blog, but writing term paper bring more difficulties. All you need is look www.essayhelp24.com. It's really helpful.



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