PME & work - Is it possible?
Long time no write... life has been crazy busy!
Before I get started, this is not me boasting or trying to make you feel bad. You must do what you can manage, I'm just letting you know what I managed when doing the PME & working. I often get asked can you manage work and the PME and the answer is definitely YES, you just need to find a balance that suits you.
I have worked since my Leaving Cert (Dec before the LC was when I started). I worked every weekend unless I booked off time. When I started college my normal weekend shift was Saturday 3pm - 3am (ish) and Sunday 12 - 10pm. I used to then drive to Cork at 10pm on a Sunday when I finished work to be in college for Monday morning! My mother always said "I'll pay for college but I'm not funding your social life". I had a car to run, a phone bill to pay and obviously my college nights out so giving up work during college was not an option.
When I started the PME I continued my weekend work like I did during my undergrad. It wasn't easy and I had to be good with my time BUT it was possible. In PME 2 I even took on another job during the week days towards the end of the year.
You might ask did I just work, teach and go to college? No I also danced, had fun with friends, went on nights out, went on holidays - life was not shit! How did I manage to do all of this??? I did it and didn't spend time wondering how I would do it all.
A typical week during PME 2:
Monday - college & dance in the evening & Monday Club after dance!
Tuesday - school & work in the evening
Wednesday - school & maybe work in the evening
Thursday - school & work in the evening
Friday - school, drive home, time with friends
Saturday - dancing & work
Sunday - gave grinds, work & drive to Cork
I had time between the places I had to be, so in that time I had to do college work and placement work and be as efficient as I possibly could. Distractions had to be minimised and I had to really priortise what I had to do immediately! During the school day when I had free classes I would plan my lessons and sort my resources. I aimed to do my school related/ placement related work in school and my college related work (assignments) at home/ in college.
I used to promise myself treats to work harder - for example "Right Nicole you can't go to Monday Club unless you get this 1000 word section of your assignment done". Sounds hilarious & mad? You're right! But it worked! I didn't spend half as much time on social media as I do now and I also was really good at ploughing through work and keeping focused. I made a list and made my way through it ticking it off as I went.
Now remember I'm not saying you have to do what I did but it is definitely possible to have a part time job (even if it is just a Saturday) on the side while doing PME. Best of luck to any PME's starting, I hope you get on well and remember ASK FOR HELP when you need it. It's not a sign of weakness!
Until next time (hopefully not as long)
This is a space for me to share what's on my mind - teaching and life related. Expect nothing fancy or well composed just the real life Múinteoir Cole