3 years ago

Australian Education Union, Victorian Branch

Australian Education Union, Victorian Branch

culture Playground talk

culture Playground talk Ned Manning has distilled a lifetime of teaching into a book that tells it like it is. Cynthia Karena AEU News ITHOUT any change in pay “Wrate, my two four-hour classes morphed into four 24-hour days,” writes drama teacher and actor Ned Manning in his new book Playground Duty, as he describes the start of a funny, stressful, and inspiring excursion with some performing arts students. Teachers all know their pay is not commensurate with the hours they put in, but this book aims to help the general public reach the same conclusion by giving a glimpse of a teacher’s life and an understanding of what teaching involves. From the inner-city schools of Sydney to country NSW, this is a warts-and-all look at Manning’s teaching experiences, full of joy, exhilaration and frustration. Manning, who recently moved to Victoria, wrote the book to “paint a picture” of teachers so people could have a conversation about teaching with an understanding of what they do. “I want to change the debate. I was sick of years of attending rallies and demonstrations trying to get a point across, and then seeing how it was reported in the press. (Typically) negative about teachers, they never had anything positive to say, implying that teachers are bludgers and lazy, and it got to me. “So I wrote the book to reflect on the nature of the job, and what teaching is about.” The book is also very funny. From Manning’s sartorial choice of a purple body shirt in the ’70s, to embarrassing himself helping students understand how to perform a character, the book conveys the comedy of teaching. But what always shines through is Manning’s passion for the job and his compassion for students. Readers will see that most teachers care about their students, want the best for them, and work hard to help them reach their potential. Like most teachers, Manning does extra work out of hours to help students, without being paid for it. For teachers and former teachers, it will bring smiles of understanding and recognition, but there is nothing new for them here. Many of them could write a book like this. But this book is important for what it tells the general public. “For people that have two kids, think about dealing with a classroom full of them!” Manning says. “I want the general public to have some sort of empathy about how demanding the job is — emotionally demanding as well. Since I left full-time teaching, I am healthier, less stressed, and I have fewer migraines. “I’m not an educational theorist, but this book is about getting people to understand the value of teachers.” ◆ Playground Duty by Ned Manning is published by New South Publishing, RRP $34.99. AEU PREFERRED PROVIDERS PROTECTING WHAT MATTERS Retirement Victoria has provided AEU members with strategic financial advice for two decades. We are now able to offer comprehensive personal advice in another area critical to the welfare of AEU members and their families — risk insurance — including Income Protection, Death, Trauma, Disability and Business Insurance. Over time we have become increasingly aware that AEU members (and their children) are under insured or not insured at all against the risks that life can present. Most have not considered a thorough risk assessment leading to an appropriate level of insurance cover. Scott Plunkett is our dedicated Insurance Adviser with a wealth of experience and a personal style backed by technical excellence consistent with Retirement Victoria’s approach to financial planning. He can design a personal protection plan and recommend the most appropriate insurance policies that will maximise your financial and lifestyle security. APPOINTMENTS WITH SCOTT To arrange a complimentary appointment for yourself, or for another family member telephone Retirement Victoria on (03) 9820 8088. Retirement Victoria Pty Ltd is an Authorised Corporate Representative of Millennium3 Financial Services Pty Ltd AFSL 244252 30 aeu news | june 2012

WIN teaching resources AEU NEWS is giving members the opportunity to win a variety of Australian resources for their school libraries from our good friends at ABC Books, Ford Street Publishing and Pan MacMillan Australia. To enter, simply email us at by 10am Tuesday, July 24. Include your name and school or workplace. Write “Win Teaching Resources” in the subject line. Prizes will be sent to the winner’s school or workplace with a special inscription recognising the winner. Good luck! SUBSCRIBE TO THE AEU E-NEWSLETTER AT FOR THE CHANCE TO WIN MORE GIVEAWAYS! giveaways Fearless in Love By Colin Thompson & illustrated by Sarah Davis FEARLESS the bulldog was taught that life is much nicer if you love everyone. But loving everyone is much more complicated than he imagined. Until he meets Primrose ... RRP $24.99, ABC Books Riley and the Grumpy Wombat By Tania McCartney & illustrated by Kieron Pratt RILEY has discovered a wombat in his nanny’s garden. But why is this furry creature so grumpy? Travel on a journey around Melbourne to find a home for a wombat. RRP $24.99, ABC Books The Spies of Gerander — Book Two By Frances Watts ALISTAIR, Alice and Alex have returned home safe from their adventures, but now that they know their homeland is in danger they can’t sit by and do nothing. With their friend Tibby Rose, they join FIG, an organisation working to free Gerander from the rule of greedy Queen Eugenia of Souris. RRP $19.99, ABC Books In the Beech Forest By Gary Crew and illustrated by Den Scheer AN ORDINARY boy takes a path leading him from the safety of his home into a dark forest. His head is full of the fearful images of the computer games that so excite, yet terrify him; battles between heroes and dreadful beasts that may haunt this primal landscape. Become his companion. Take the journey. RRP $29.95, Ford Street Publishing Arkie Sparkle, Treasure Hunter: Code Crimson By Petra James THE first in an exciting new seven-book series that combines archaeology, action, high-tech gadgets, history, humour, a supersonic mini-jet, treasure hunting, fashion, two best friends and a bassett hound. Arkie’s archaeologist parents have been kidnapped. With the help of her cousin TJ and basset hound Cleo, she must find seven treasures across the seven continents in seven days. RRP $6.99, Pan Macmillan Australia Congratulations to our winners from AEU News issue 3 2012: Day to Remember: the story of ANZAC Day — Kerron Worsdell, Springside P-9 College; Outpost — Tania Marshall, Kent Park Primary School; Queen of the Night — Bronwyn Knight, Oberon High School; Ten Mile River — Joanne Thompson, Western Port Secondary College; King Jack and the Dragon — Diane McLennan, Barriburn Preschool. There’s more to life than paying a mortgage. That’s why we offer our Basic Home Loan. It has special features including a repayment pause 1 , options on payment frequency and free redraw. All designed to help you live well. Get back to basics with: A low variable interest rate Flexible repayments Free redraw facility Repayment pause 1 Eco-pause 1 $8 monthly fee Learn more and apply online at or call 132 888. mecu Limited ABN 21 087 651 607 AFSL/Australian Credit Licence Number 238431 trading as bankmecu. Terms, conditions, fees and charges apply and are available on application. Loans subject to normal lending criteria and approval. 1. Loans must be established for a full 12 months and a maximum loan to value ratio of 90% (Family-Pause) or 80% (Eco-Pause) applies. Pausing repayments will result in interest continuing to accrue on the loan, potentially increasing the term of your loan. Full conditions available from bankmecu. AEU 33543 31

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