Teachers - does anyone have advice on managing a hobby that could take up a lot of free time?

(8 Posts)
coffeewithchips Sun 24-Aug-14 22:21:21

Are there any teachers here who have a hobby/group they go to outside of work? Last school year was quite full on for me and I felt like I was spending so much time thinking about work that I forget to do things for myself. My resolution for next year is to build more things in during my free time that are just for me to enjoy.

I am thinking of joining a local amateur theatre company but I'm unsure because I'm worried I'd be taking too much on. This particular group holds a weekly rehearsal (2 hours on a week night) plus I expect there would be a lot of time dedicated to learning lyrics/lines outside of contact time and extra rehearsals leading up to a big show or concert. I would love to get involved (musical theatre and drama is one of my favourite things and I also run drama clubs at school). However, my job is quite busy, especially around assessment deadlines/inspections etc. I could probably make the rehearsal each week but I'm not sure if I'd have time to learn lines and perform. I've looked on their Facebook and most of their members seem to have jobs that you can leave at work such as office work. Obviously, teaching isn't like it.

I was heavily involved in drama when I was younger (from the age of 5 - 17) and I miss that part of my life. I thought about perhaps emailing the group and asking for a bit more information about what they'd expect of their members. I know they also take on people to work backstage, and although this isn't perfect, it would involve me in some capacity and I could perhaps do some acting when I have time.

Does anyone have any experience of joining a group like this and keeping a balance? I'm just anxious about coping with workload but I would love to get involved with this smile

mrsmilesmatheson Mon 25-Aug-14 08:39:04

I attend a choir. Rehearsals are 2 hours on a week night plus more rehearsals running up to performances and the time spent at sound checks, stage prep and performances themselves. We also get the chance to do extra workshops and outings including social events.

It's brilliant for distracting me from school stuff and is the highlight of my week when work gets stressful. grin Best thing I ever did, joining up!

tintingirl Mon 25-Aug-14 16:15:17

I have colleagues who do exactly this and they manage (and also have small children but supportive partners). They do at least 2 shows a year but tend to only take on a "big" role every 2-3 shows. If you take a more minor role there are less lines to learn and you may not be needed at every rehearsal. If you teach 6th form then bare in mind some of them may be in the same amateur dramatics company. I think if you have less time to do school stuff you manage your time better. I would go for it! Wish I could act - always looks like a lot of fun and good friendships are made. Good luck

EvilTwins Mon 25-Aug-14 18:24:23

I'm in a choir. We rehearse for 1.5 hours per week and perform 2 or 3 times per year. I love it.

I used to act and did a play this summer. It made me realise that whilst I really really enjoyed it, it's all consuming for the run of the show. It was at our local theatre and was a mix of professional and amateur performers. The week of the show I was at the theatre from 6pm each evening (tech Monday, dress Tuesday and then performances Wednesday - Saturday plus a matinee on the Saturday) I was exhausted - the adrenaline rush after each show meant I couldn't sleep straight away so was really tired. It was summer hols though. Two of the others in the play had office type jobs and so had taken the week off.

Choir is ideal - it's the bit of the week where I'm just me - not Mummy or Miss.

Guilianna Fri 29-Aug-14 08:40:32

Definitely get in touch with them - nothing to lose and a lot to gain!

MamaPizza Sat 30-Aug-14 14:15:29

I'm a member of an amateur musical society.

We rehearse every Tuesday for a couple of hours in the evening.

About a month before a show we also rehearse Sunday afternoons for three hours.

The last week before the show it is every night and then there is show week!

Now, I'm not going to lie - the run up to a show is a killer and then there is still the actual show week - being up until late every night and having to get up again in the morning to get to work is going to take your energy. But it is worth it, just being on stage is fab.

It can work if you want it to work. You can take on as much or as little as you want to, for example for the upcoming show in November I am 'only' in the chorus bits as I'm starting a new job in September and I didn't want to take on too much, but I've had bigger parts in the past. I could have auditioned for a bigger part, and I would have been able to learn the lines this summer holiday, but made the decision not to due to the new job (otherwise I'd have gone for it) and me having to prepare lots for it (HoD job).
At the moment I don't have lines to learn, just many dance routines and songs and then some acting, but I enjoy them and it's a good distraction. I download the songs and listen to them in the car on my commute, the best way to learn lyrics.

There are quite a few teachers in my group. Most of us will bring marking to rehearsals and work on it while their part isn't on. This actually works really well for all of us. Our last show was Wizard of Oz and let's say if your part was the Wicked Witch and you were not on stage, you would be sitting in the back marking and just get back on stage when it's your turn. As long as you remember your prompts its fine.

I'd say just contact them, have a look at what they do and then make a decision. And as I said, it can easily work if you take on a little less to start with and then maybe bigger parts when you feel confident that you can manage learning lines etc..

It's good fun and a nice way to escape the daily grind. I've also had many pupils in the audience in recent years as it's local to my old school and it was nice for them to see that we teachers also have a life outside school. Makes us more human wink I've had good chats about drama etc. and one of my pupils even joined.

MamaPizza Sat 30-Aug-14 14:15:50

Gosh, that's an epic post. I might be a bit too passionate grin

goldenlilliesdaffodillies Sun 31-Aug-14 13:33:52

I do am dram and am a teacher! Most of the people in the group are teachers too. We just bring work along to do for when not involved in a section of a rehearsal. I'm a Infant teacher and sometimes it's quite handy as other people volunteer to help cut things out for resources etc so it gets done faster!
It's a great hobby to escape from the real world- go for it!

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