This year’s Roald Dahl Day wasn’t ideal. I chose to run a competition, but what with one thing and another, it didn’t really go as planned. So while my colleagues are basking in their successful events, I thought I’d share what I learned.

(And no, it wasn’t on purpose, it was just trying to squish another event into an already bursting agenda).

  1. Whatever day you’re participating in, decide on your activity at the last minute. That way, so matter how well organised it seems, there’s likely to be some unforeseen problem. Better still: have a half-baked plan for your event. The more considered your planning, the more likely that it will run without a hitch.
  2. Forget to share your plan with any other staff. You don’t want them mentioning it to any of their pupils and encouraging an audience.
  3. Neglect to advertise: posters, messages in bulletins and reminders will only set the idea in pupils’ heads.
  4. Have an accident or be sick on the day itself, thus ensuring that even if pupils have heard any other news about the day’s events, they won’t be able to enquire if you’re participating.
  5. Hold the event on a different day altogether once you’re feeling better and back at work – but don’t forget rules 2, 3 and 4 still apply! With any luck, pupils that might normally participate will choose to catch up with homework instead.