As such, I was quite pleased to have the chance to completely forget my job hunt for a bit and go to London to graduate. I had occasionally wondered this term why I was going to all the trouble of going to the ceremony but actually, I'm really glad I went with my instinct and did it. I even got quite choked up by the whole experience - partly, it was that time of the month, but I have always found the OU message that education is for everyone to be really inspiring and it felt really nice to finish off my degree with something a little special like that.
After the ceremony, we went for a really rather good dinner with my folks before seeing them back to Liverpool street and onto their train and heading for a hotel in Kensington for an overnight stay. On the Saturday, it was a really perfect day for me to enjoy myself - sunny and bright but with just enough spring chill in the air to make walking a pleasure. We headed out with no real plan in mind other than to end up near Imperial college and to catch some pokemon and ended up having a gentle saunter through West Bromwich cemetery, which was just lovely. I find Victorian cemeteries like that fascinating - the ways the memorialised the dead speak of such different ideas about life and society from mine that I find them fascinating.
After that, we ended up making our way to the V&A where we spent an absolutely lovely 4 hours or so wandering round, enjoying their beautiful Islamic Art gallery, admiring the costumes through the ages (I think if I time travel, the only era where I'd quite like the the clothes I'd have to wear would be the 20s) and being fascinated by the Rapid Reaction Collection, which has a selection of items acquired in the last 5 years which the musuem staff have collected as saying something interesting about design or culture, including a 3d printed gun and a pussy hat. Definitely recommend it for your visit to London, elyssa and stevieg. We rounded off the weekend with an evening at the Festival of Bad Adhoc Hypotheses, where I learned that aliens are using our junk DNA as long term storage to back up their kittie pictures, and other, equally fun suggestions. On the way out of London, I caught the last Magikarp needed to make a Gyrados literally from the bus and all in all, it felt like a really perfect day and a wonderful way to recharge my batteries.
And I really needed to recharge my batteries because on Thursday I'd fired off a speculative application for a teaching job in a village school which I hadn't managed to visit, what with everything going on, but which mentioned developing a leadership role in the description and sounded potentially interesting and on Tuesday I found out that I'd been shortlisted for an interview on Friday. I actually found it the easiest interview task that I'd had to plan because they'd been quite clear in what they wanted to see without being too constraining - pick a topic (space, mountains or chocolate) and teach a lesson to develop writing skills in the area of poetry, characterisation or setting and then in the interview tell us how you would develop it from there. I particularly liked that they acknowledged when setting the task that you might not get to a written outcome in 30 minutes - it all added up to something where they'd clearly thought about what they wanted to see and whether you could realistically get at it from that constrained 30 minute teaching experience. I ended up doing Space and teaching a session where we created some colonists to go on the Mars One colony expedition, which would lead into lots of story writing as well as a tonne of cross curricular stuff if you made it a unit and they were very happy with how it went. In the interview, they explained that the job would be as head of KS2, 3rd SLT member in a small school and teaching Y5/6, all of which fit very well with what I'd been imagining when I first started job hunting, and they'd be offering a chance to do leadership training as well. Overall, by the time I headed home after a tour of the school with the head teacher, I knew I wanted the job so I was back to the up and down stress rollercoaster feeling but this time, everything clicked into place right and they offered me the job! I was so happy to be able to accept and now the only thing I need to think about is how much handover work I'm going to have to do!