Stop #1 South Melbourne, VIC

Don’t write this down, as none of the months are set in stone. Imagine instead that they’re written in sand while the tide is coming in. At least half of each month will be washed away by the many, many commitments that I’ve made to edit magazines, record podcasts, and create resources for the Wine with Teacher Wellbeing Club. So, keep that in mind. This tour is reliably unreliable – in other words, flexible.

Border closures? We’ll adapt.
Cold and flu? We’ll adapt.
Possible root canal? We’ll adapt.

So here it is, the many mini tours of Our Creative Classroom x Wine with Teacher in 2021. A series of extremely flexible dates that may or may not be adjusted for covid-restrictions and dental surgery. If there is one person who can improvise when faced with an unexpected adjustment or last-minute detour, it’s a teacher.

  • April – VIC and SA
  • May – SA and VIC
  • June – NSW and ACT
  • July – NSW and QLD
  • August – NT
  • September - TAS
  • October – WA

These mini tours are about uncovering our current collective experience as teachers in 2021. Connection is at the centre and heart of these conversations. I felt it immediately in the hugs from all four teachers who arrived today; ready to share untold personal stories from their careers, ready to be indescribably vulnerable with someone who is (essentially) a stranger.

Forty-four years of teaching experience between them.
Forty-four years of triumphs and challenges.
Forty-four years of making a difference.

Each person followed a different path into teaching, and it was enlightening to hear their individual revelations and personal discoveries while embarking on their unique journeys. I found comfort in the energy that exuded from all four teachers, observing how their faces truly lit up when they spoke about:

  • Finding the personal interests of disengaged students to hook them back into learning.
  • Working at a school that had supportive leadership and staying for fifteen years.
  • Returning from maternity leave with a new level of patience and understanding.
  • Stoking the passion for teaching, like burning wood over the hot coals of a fireplace.
  • Bouncing back from workplace bullying to find a school that recognised strengths.
  • The power of self-belief and using teaching skills to start a new creative business.

My role right now is to listen, empower, and record a series of personal and in-depth interviews. Each line of questioning is intended to provoke teachers into revealing their brightest and darkest moments from their teaching careers. I won't be sharing these recordings, instead I'll be using these conversations as a foundation for a future discussion.

Inside each answer there is a lesson to be learned. I'm ready to learn it.

So, what’s your story?

Take all the time you need.

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