Becoming a parent changes your outlook to things that happen as a teacher. The way you handle situations changes because that could actually be your child. The way a child is encouraged alters, the praise heaped on them, the discipline required; everything changes when you become a parent.
Particularly when your child reaches school age.
The Boy has just recounted a tale to me of a fight that happened at lunchtime, that he became involved in when trying to prevent his best friend from becoming hurt. Of course, the two little thugs turned on The Boy and pulled his coat, scramming his hand and pushing him to the floor, hurting his knee in the process.
It was at this point that he raced off to find a midday supervisor to tell her what was going on.
So how do you handle that as a parent?
I know what I've done in the past as a teacher, but my reactions as a parent are different. Vastly different.
I'm cross that the dinnerlady told him to go and get them and bring the boys to her. He's five years old and had just been hurt by them, they're not going to listen to him. (But how many times have I given that instruction myself to a child?)
I'm cross that those children turned on my son when he tried to help. (So do I tell him not to get involved and run to get a dinnerlady the minute he spots it happening? Or do I praise him for standing up to people who were hurting someone else? What if this means he then gets hurt? Or blamed for being involved in a fight? He's never been in a fight in his life!)
I'm cross that I've called them thugs. (They're only children and God only knows what's going on in their lives that they think being violent to someone else is ok! I'm reminded of this excellent post by Miss Night Mutters which I thoroughly agreed with as a teacher, yet as a parent am having a hard time remembering.)
Being a parent and a teacher? It's a blessing in disguise.
But sometimes it's a pain in the arse, especially when your child goes to the school you work in.