So it is the end of the school day, the children have gone home and after picking up forgotten jumpers and abandoned pencils you prepare to mark your books.
All across the country teachers close their doors and lay out their marking kit:
Stampers, highlighters, the rainbow selection of pens and the piles of books.
A marathon begins, take a few breathes and one by one the pile of books are marked. Time slows down, you sigh, you are tired, shut in a room which feels haunted by the earlier bustle of the day or
Maybe you are the teacher who shields your books from the wind and the rain as you load your car with marking to do at home... I guess we all do that from time to time.
It sounds like a lonely existence to me, it felt lonely but then maybe there's another way...
Let me introduce marking club...I know it doesn't sound very exciting! But bear with me....
1) invite some colleagues into your class
2) set up your marking kit as usual
3) decide on rota for cake/biscuits and coffee runs.
4) play list
5) mark for 30 mins, rest for 10, mark for 30, rest for 10
6) rest = get up and be activity - my favourites are table tennis and catch.
I mark more! I know! Every 30 minutes I lose 10 minutes so I was surprised but, within those 30 minutes I'm focused and work more efficiently. What's more, when I look up I see colleagues, my friends beating their pile too.
This doesn't have to be a whole school event, if it was it would probably be a different story to share...however, with the right mix of people it could sprinkle a little magic and before you know it...you may even look forward to it!
My favourite part of marking club is feeling part of a team, we are all in this together!