5 ways to spot a teacher

Let’s face it. We’re everywhere. Trainee teachers, current teachers, retired teachers, tired teachers and fired teachers. You can find us in the pub, at the race course, in the cinema, at the theatre and in shops. In short, very much like Invasion of the Body Snatchers, we are here. Luckily there are some easy give-aways that mean you can spot a teacher in any social setting. So, we give you – 5 Ways to Spot a Teacher.


1 Drugs

An easy way to spot a teacher is at medication time. In most other professions, people will sneak off to the toilet to get a glass of water to take their paracetomal. Teachers will always have a blister pack on them somewhere and spend the day taking them like candy. In addition they will always offer you one. This is because at any time every  teacher is suffering from something that needs pain medication.


2. A breakdown

Because teachers are dramatically underpaid for the actual hours they work, as opposed to the hours they are contracted to work, every teacher drives a car that is one step away from the vehicle that is usually rejected from Banger Races. In addition, when they call you to say they have had a breakdown, they will always qualify this with, “I mean my car has had a breakdown.” This is because every teacher is only one lesson observation away from a real honest-to-God-meltdown and so the statement has to be qualified. 

3. Children

Teachers often dislike children with an intensity only matched by that of the child catcher in Chitty Chitty Bang Bang. This comes from a life-time of having to be nice to truly horrible children. Worse, not only nice to them but massively encouraging and positive. Even if they have just sworn at us we are experts in gritting our teeth and laughing along with them. Incidentally this skill is also seen in Traffic Wardens, Ambulance Technicians and Prison Warders.

4. Organisation

Despite a lifetime of organising lessons, trips, assemblies and school events, most teachers are a disorganised shambles in real life. Credit Card bills are left unpaid, there is never milk in the fridge, the bread is always stale and the Tax Disc is always, “in the post Officer.”

This is all due to a simple reason called ‘Bell Fatigue’. Every teachers life is ruled by bells from the minute the alarm goes off in the morning to hearing the Chimes at Midnight.

In addition every minute is governed by some sort of plan. Whether it is a lesson plan, an agenda for a meeting, or an Individual Action Plan for a student. This means that when teachers break free from these restrictions, something very much like Lord of the Flies happens. Ties are flung from car windows, shoes are hurled into corners of rooms, post is stuffed in drawers unopened,  in short, Teachers give up all responsibility and regress to 5 year old children cramming food and drink (especially drink) into their mouths. This does not make for an organised home life.

5. Multi-Tasking

You can easily spot a teacher in full flow, by the fact they are always doing more than one thing at once. Skills learnt in the classroom where Teachers will often be; breaking up a fight, comforting a sobbing teenager, be printing 30 Support Sheets, be trying to fix the projector, find the Presentation for the lesson, tell the Teaching Assistant what’s going on, set cover work for an absent colleague,  make coffee and reply to 20 ‘urgent’ emails simultaneously. This means that Teachers are often experiencing a state of adrenaline similar to someone leaping from a plane at 20,000 feet, having just won the lottery, into a pool of Tiger sharks. While being observed by Ofsted. Real life seem extremely slow paced and linear after a day of teaching and this takes some adjusting to. 


Well, that’s our list. Do you have any fool proof ways to spot a teacher and add to our  list of ‘5 Ways to Spot a Teacher’? If so let us know in the comments box below. We’d love to hear from you.


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