The fellowship of teachers

Published 10 January 2022
By Mike Halton and Phil Young

Teachers Mike and Phil play on a children's climbing frame in a playground

There’s another side to teaching that only the teachers can tell you about. While you’ll spend a lot of your time in the classroom with the students, you’ll also become part of a tight-knit team of teachers just like you. You’ll find camaraderie, support, make lifelong friendships and, of course, have a lot of fun. So, to give you the low down on what goes on outside the classroom, we’ve asked fellow teachers Mike Halton and Phil Young to share their experiences.

What’s your school culture like?

Mike: All our colleagues are very supportive. If you’ve had a hard day, there’s always someone there to listen - even if it’s just a two-minute natter or moan.

What goes on outside the classroom?

Phil: We all get on really well, we’re like a big family (excuse the corniness). We do curry nights every month where we go out and put the world to rights.

Mike: We’ve started a running club recently, and we’ve gone to football matches together too.

What about during the pandemic?

Phil: We really look out for each other. I formed a bubble with one of the other teachers who was living alone during last year’s lockdown. We had games nights and formed a strong friendship during that time.

Best part of your day?

Phil: Seeing the students arrive and knowing they can’t wait to get to my class. There’s no feeling like it.

Mike: Lunch!! No, just kidding … Every day is different, so I never know what’s really going to happen, that’s what makes it great.

What have you learnt from your colleagues?

Mike: My teaching assistant suggested giving out different badges at the end of each day to reward kids for showing characteristics like respect or self-belief or honesty. They love it – they’ve really latched onto the idea!

Dare we ask, who’s stricter?

Mike: I think Phil is probably more vigilant than me …

Phil: Underneath it, I’m a big softie though!

Advice to someone thinking about becoming a teacher?

Phil: I know a lot of people wrestle with the idea for a while, and think, do I take this step? There’s always something that could hold you back, but you’ve got to have the courage to make the jump. I promise the level of satisfaction is like nothing you’ll get in another job. I wake up every morning and want to get into school.

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