Photos by Bukky Yusuf @rondelle10_b
Saturday 8th July 2017 was the day that #TMPicnic was held.
I woke on that morning feeling fairly wiped out after an extremely busy yet enjoyable week. I am pretty certain that I am not the only one that gets so tired before the summer break that you almost forget your own name… Forgetting to help a nearest and dearest the evening before, meant that I had to set off later than planned towards, West Ham Park.
It’s hard to fully describe the serenity and tranquility of the event. First of all, it was my first outdoor teach meet. Secondly, it was in the park pavilion. Thirdly, there were a small number of attendees. Fourthly, it was exactly what I needed to end my busy week.
The event allowed us to just sit and be. There was no pressure what so ever to engage in a particular way. It therefore reinforced the theme of ‘community’. We were a community of primary and secondary educators spending a relaxed afternoon together. By the time I arrived, the conversation had centred around @DeputyDifferent explaining his present role and how he had set up a community programme to allow the school children to meet diverse neighbouring schools. Quite simply, Farhaan is a head teacher in the making.
The conversations then flowed to a multitude of topics including politics, different perspectives on Brexit and what we could do to support our students. I loved the fact that we could openly share our thoughts and opinions as it helped us get to know each other a little more. I was delighted to have also ‘won’ Sandi Toksvig’s book ‘Hilter’s Canary’.
Having had enough to feed an army (not an exaggeration!) we ended up giving snacks to a family having a barbeque in the park, drinks to the park superintendent and food to one family that had lost their home to fire.
As I left #TMPicnic, I took the opportunity to check out some of the garden areas within the large park. Slowly walking about gave me time to process, internalize and offload many of my thoughts.
Reflecting upon the impact of this particular teach meet reminded me of advice from one of my coaches. She pointed out that even though it may seem counter-intuitive; we regularly need the quieter, slower periods within our lives as another way to increase our energy levels. After a frenetic week, #TMPicnic provided the best way to end the week on a well being high.