Where to live? This is something of a quandary and my suggestion would be to build a granny flat in your parent’s back garden. Unfortunately, for many of us, this is not an option. Why do I suggest this though? Firstly, having the support of your family throughout this difficult year – I believe – can be imperative to your success. Knowing that if you have a busy evening of lesson planning and marking to complete but your mum/dad/aunt/uncle/sister/brother can cook dinner for you or make you a cup of tea can be really reassuring. Similarly, if you are having one of those overwhelming moments, having someone there to give you a hug and listen to your troubles is equally comforting. However, living with family also has its setbacks – sorry mum if you read this. Most people that are completing a PGCE are coming straight from their undergraduate degree and generally have lived away from home for at least three years. Therefore, having to move back home and suddenly tell your family where you are going, who you are going with, what you will be doing and, most importantly, when you are coming home can be quite a shock. Similarly, you have to observe family household rules. This may sound like I am just being self-centred – I am not the only one of my friends who have moved back home and have felt this way, trust me – but after living away it really is quite a shock. On the other hand, whilst living away from home can avert all these worries, for many on the PGCE year it is not a viable option financially. Similarly, sometimes you just need that hug or that cup of tea brought up to you – remember the importance of tea during this year. Therefore, if you have a granny flat, or maybe even a sturdy shed, I would consider moving into there for the foreseeable future.
I would bow down to anybody who can fit a part time job in whilst completing this year. This is something I have struggled with as I have had at least one part time job at a time since I was 14. This has meant that my erratic spending habits in Zara and H&M have always been justified as I have had money going into my account each week thus somehow balancing out my accounts. Therefore, I have had to reign in my spending considerably this year – which has been hard considering I have had to transform my student wardrobe from the last 4 years into a teacher/ young professional wardrobe. However, I just don’t see how I could give my all to my PGCE, keep going to the gym and seeing friends every so often (we have to fit in things we enjoy) whilst also juggling a part time job. I have already warned my family and friends that this year Christmas presents are likely come in the form of baked goods…
Finally, I am not really sure that this fits into the title of logistics but I really think it is important to ensure you have a comfortable bed – wherever you choose to live – and you make plenty of use of it. Seriously, you need to sleep. Each day you are presenting yourself in front of hundreds of students and a large number of colleagues. You need to look professional and huddling in a corner of your classroom yawning constantly will not be setting a very good example for your students. Each night, I try to stop work by 9pm latest and turn my laptop off. This gives me time to wash (also very important but hopefully you already know that), gets things ready for the following day and unwind before going into my comfortable bed to sleep.
And on that note, it’s time I turn my laptop off now. Night all.