35 Years

It’s now official. I am old. A teacher for 35 years? It only seems like yesterday that I stepped into my first class. Knees trembling, mouth dry, heart pounding.

And yet I’ve loved nearly every minute of it. Great kids – and a few challenging ones! Inspiring teachers and some great leaders. Lots of fun and many lasting memories.

When the invitation arrived to attend a ceremony recognising my long years of service to the profession, I accepted with some reluctance.

Two highlights of my career were requested beforehand. My God, 35 years has provided hundreds of highlights, so how to choose only two?

Well maybe officer of army cadets in the 1980’s. Two teachers and 120 students in the bush for 5 days!


Or was it when my year 12 maths class presented me with a signed ‘Glam Rock’ record album at the end of the year. I was choked with emotion and said “You guys shouldn’t have bought this for me!” They quickly replied “We didn’t buy it Sir, we lifted it”.


Perhaps joint programs with primary schools. For example taking my year 10 class to a nearby primary school to mentor grade 2 students for 10 weeks.

Certainly two years as an ICT mentor, helping teachers implement IWB technology into their classrooms.


And so last night I stumbled up to the lectern to be presented with my certificate. A proud moment, but also sad in that the end of my teaching career is looming. Photos and back to my seat to listen to the guest speaker.

Kerry Cue bounds up to the microphone and instantly has the room’s attention. She weave’s a wonderful story of a Maths/Chemistry teacher who has had many poignant and hilarious moments in her 10 years of teaching. Kerry takes each teacher to a place where they are young teachers again, and reliving many important moments in their teaching career. We can relate well to her clever story telling. Kerry fills the room with laughter.


After her talk, I cannot resist introducing myself. We instantly learn that we both have started a wordpress Maths blog. So I recommend that you cruise on over and check out Mathspigs – some wonderful reading awaits you.

Photo taken by Author in Vietnam 2008

Photo taken by Author in Vietnam 2008


 On reflection the award night was not so bad. It has reinforced what an important job I’ve had for the last 30+ years, and maybe I’ll teach for another 5 or 10. And of course I have made a new friend ……..


About webmaths

I have been teaching Mathematics in Victorian secondary schools for 30 years. I use the www to make my maths lessons better. I hope this blog will give other teachers some ideas to try in their own classes.
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