What do the last 5 things you purchased say about your priorities?

It’s easy to spend money randomly and without thinking. How well do your recent purchases reflect what you consider to be important?

My last 5 purchases

I recently came across a blog post somewhere asking readers to consider their last 5 purchases. At the time of reading* my last 5 things were…

  • x1 photobook on Blurb of 30ish  photographs I’d taken. This marks the end of a long term personal creative project- charting our journey through IVF fertility treatment and birth of our twin daughters
  • x1 commissioned work of art for our landing from an artist I came across via Facebook
  • x1 photo journal which features the 40 snapshots from my iPhone’s camera reel which I feel best represent my 2016. A visual kind of visual review of the year.
  • x1  present for my mum
  • X1 2017 calendar featuring photos that I’d taken of our kids throughout the previous year

That was a few days ago…

Now my last 5 purchases immediately prior to writing this post are (most recent first)

  • x2  bottles of jojoba oil (for my hair and skin)
  • x1  Mean Girls DVD
  • x1 chicken shish kebab
  • x1 rail ticket into London

How does our spending match what we say we care about?

What do each of those say about me? Do they even say the same thing? People fixate a lot on money. I see it as a tool not an end to itself.

An interesting exercise is to consider how well the above purchases correspond to the words that I currently** use to guide my personal and professional life.

Integrity. Relationships. Curiosity. Fun

Now it’s your turn

  • What do your last 5 purchases say about you?
  • How well do they reflect what you feel is important?
  • Do you know what your next 5 purchases will be?

I’m interested to hear your thoughts. Send me an email on ismall1408@gmail.com or tweet me at @ieshasmall

*I think I originally read and wrote this at the start of 2017. I found it today in my drafts and thought I should publish it. 

** These are now Integrity. Relationships. Growth. Fun. Abundance.

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The death of teachmeets?

Teach meets started as an informal gathering of teachers, hoping to share ideas and learn from each other. They we free and informal and for teachers, by teachers. Some presentations were good, some were bad, some useful some less so but they were democratic and practitioner- led. They were the antidote to conferences and courses that cost £100s of pounds ( themselves and in cover) often led by people whose job it seems at times it to make money from our educational system.

Teachers wanted to listen to professionals who still taught and who taught kids like ours. In schools like ours. With timetables like ours. We were tired of hearing the latest eduguru tell us stuff that wasn’t directly applicable in our classrooms. We were tired of going to conferences and hearing the same key- note speakers put minutely different spins on the same message. We were tired of missing our classes to go on courses that didn’t really impact our teaching.

The first time I went to a TM it was a breath of fresh air, teachers who had given up heir personal time to develop professionally, you could feel the energy and good will in the room. I felt invigorated but even then I noticed some signs that the honey moon couldn’t last. A few presentations were barely masked pitches for educational services. Commercial companies had caught wind of teach meets and seen it as a new way to market. Some we probably worried that teachers would stop going to traditional paid for conferences and decided to jump on the teach meet bandwagon.

Now I wonder if we as a profession are allowing teach meets to become the very things that we railed against? As a causal and fairly novice observer (attender of 2 teachmeets and observer pf others via Twitter) some TMs are starting to look depressingly the same, the same star presenters, often superbloggers plugging their forthcoming books, the same keynote speakers ( now starting to migrate from the laid for conference circuit) and in some cases even the same audiences.

Today I note that Osiris, an educational course provider has, out of the goodness of its heart supposedly started a website where people can

This isn’t what the revolution was meant to be? Was it?