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How to teach and still play 40K

It might be interesting to know for some of you, that I did not pay for my Dark Vengeance box set.
No, I didn't steal it, and I actually get on quite well with my local Games Workshop store owner.

The trick is simple, and open to any teacher, and virtually any school; I run the Wargaming club. And that gives me about £100 of the school's money to spend on little plastic soldiers per term.

This is probably the only way a teacher can find time for a hobby as time consuming as table top war gaming. You'll always need a few hours to construct and paint your models, and the games alone can take up a whole evening. During term time, this is simply something teachers cannot do (or good teachers at least).

You're constantly under pressure for marking books, preparing lessons, and if you happen to work at a boarding school, making sure the students are out of bed in the morning without their underpants on their heads. I've done some duties putting together Eldar Guardians in the boarding house, fielding such delightful questions as "Sir can I order pizza?" and, "Sir, is it ok if I just pop over to the girl's house to borrow a pencil?" Pro-tip: The pencil is a lie. And they never offer you any of the pizza.

So unless you're in possession of time management skills that would put a super-computer to shame, you're unlikely to be able to keep up with 40K, Age of Sigmar, or any of the more arty-crafty war games.

Enter the club.

This gates you an hour or two a week of pure hobby indulgence. And you get paid for it as well. Once the club is up and running, you have all the excuse you need to walk into a hobby shop and purchase a dozen paint brushes you've wanted to test for a while.

Not only that, but you'll rarely be lacking in matches... But you may find yourself teaching your opponents the rules more often than not.

Besides the chance the geek out at work with a crowd of enthusiastic geeks, it's also good for you as a teacher to run a club. The students see you in a different light, and you get to deal with subjects typically out of your subject area.

You'll find that the students will start to talk about things they wouldn't usually do so in a classroom context. As any teacher will tell you, rapport is important (and doubly so with classes that are less than stellar in terms of behaviour).

It also gives you a niche activity, and it's very unlikely for you to have competition with it. This makes you more valuable to management, particularly if you're one of the well supplied subjects like English or PE. Making yourself more irreplaceable is the closest you'll get to job security these days.
In terms of networking, well, it can help there too. I'll explain why later. There's actually an awful lot of benefit to running such a club for students too, but this topic is large, and I'm not going to cover it all in one post.

Until next time!


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