‘I don’t need Christmas gifts (especially fish) because the moments of utter joy I get doing the job I do is enough’

Brian Walton, headteacher of Brookside Academy in Somerset is writing in the TES about some of the weird gifts he has received as a teacher and why he doesn’t need any gifts.

I was once gifted a strange fish on the last day of the Christmas term. Wrapped in dissolving newspaper and handed across my desk with a massive smile (the child not the fish). It didn’t smell great and looked like no fish I had ever seen before.

I had no idea where it had come from; I hoped it was from the sea and not someone’s aquarium. I mustered my best “Oh, you shouldn’t have” face and thanked the child for such a considerate gesture. “Fish!” was all the child kept saying.

Thinking about this makes me realise how lucky I have been to be a teacher; the simple joys in the often surreal moments that come out of the job.

It is these moments, often born from good intentions, which make teaching the greatest job in the world.

The fact that a teacher is thought about after school is something to be celebrated. I wonder if the CEO of Burger King has children asking their parents to send them a gift? Even if it is pair of garden Gnomes drinking cider (Oh yes I did!)

But the point of this is that I don’t need any gifts (especially fish!) because doing the job I do is enough. The real gift of working in a school is in knowing that you make a difference. It is a great feeling.

Read more at: ‘I don’t need Christmas gifts (especially fish) because the moments of utter joy I get doing the job I do is enough’

What are some of the weirdest gifts you’ve received as, or given, a teacher? Let us know in the comments below or on Twitter. ~ Sophie

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