Thursday, August 24, 2006

Lone Ranger.........

Sometimes when you work with children you can get to feel very lonely.
You long for the return to the days of huddling round cups of coffee and chatting about your weekend, not just talking for 1 minute before you feel guilty as there really is Something Else You Are Supposed To Be Doing (chatting at work - capital offence? Discuss.)

You remember when the staffroom door opened and a hush fell - was it one of the bosses? Stop talking about the hierarchy in school - quick!

When working with children meant you (the employees) were one of Us and not Them.
I'm not knocking working in school; but although you are apart from other adults when you teach; when you're not teaching there is a camraderie that's difficult to find anywhere else.

Even a call to go down to assembly with 30 children in tow means you can cast meaningful looks and nudges to your pals on staff. Ever tried holding a silent conversation with your friend and colleague on the other side of an assembly hall? It's fun. You become most proficient in NVC (non verbal communication).

Teaching has the potential to be lonely - if you let it! - but the staff room banter every day between 10.55 and 11.10 and 12.40pm and 1.30 was exceptionally brilliant fun.

I am off to England this weekend to work as part of a team of 80, providing a mixture of activities to 8 to 11 year olds. Some of it is Bible teaching, I hope all of it is lots of fun, and some of it provide opportunities for children to make different kinds of responses. I can't wait to go!

Although I work in a friendly, happy, busy office, with many, many people supporting me in my job; sometimes I feel on my own. My teams and I are not present for 50% of the services to hear, feel and see what's happening. It feels as if we're not the same as those who work pastorally with adults. Ummmm, yes, you have to think exceedingly quickly on your feet, have excellent organisational skill, be creative, have loads of energy, passion and be aware that there will be no pretending to be nice if what you have just done didn't work!!

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