Before the first day of school: bad dreams and butterflies

On Sunday night I had a nightmare. I was walking to the front of my classroom after bringing the children in from the yard after break. I asked them all to sit down as they came in. I turned my back to them walking to the front of the room, expecting them to do this with little fuss. A few seconds later, for some strange reason, I sensed that something was not right. I slowly turned to see that they had silently refused to do what they were told – all of them. They were stood behind their chairs. Once they saw that I had turned to face them, they then began to military march on the spot in unison, like a well-oiled battalion, ready for war. Their little eyes glared at me with evil smiles. It was REALLY weird. Luckily that was all I can remember. This menacing yet impressively well orchestrated display of defiant behaviour has never actually happened in real life, yet I dreamed it.


What’s even more creepy is that another colleague had a ‘uncontrollable class’ dream on Sunday too. Arguably it was less evil, yet, I now feel slightly better about my own dream hearing that someone else had had the same experience.


Couple this bad dream with my stomach now feeling jittery and my mind racing. I’m nervous about tomorrow. I’m nervous to see my new class. I’m nervous about whether I’m ready for the grind of school life once again. I’m worried, quite frankly, about whether I can remember how to teach!


Is it wrong to feel this way?


I’ve been teaching three years now and I’m moving to a new year group. So maybe this is okay, given that I’m still honing my trade and I’m moving on to teach a different curriculum level.


Yet, talking to lots of the highly experienced teachers (twenty years or more) in my school, lots of them said they feel the same. You always feel like this before the first day of school, they said, and it never goes away.


They said you feel this way because you care about it.


They said it’s because teaching matters to you.


If that’s the case, then I’m okay with the butterflies but maybe not the nightmares.


Here we go again.

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