Thursday 3 April 2014

NCIS Gibbs' Rules - Teacher Version

In the TV programme, NCIS: Naval Criminal Investigative Service, the leader of the team, Leroy Jethro Gibbs (“Gibbs”), has a set of rules which he’s lived and learned through his years as a marine.  Here is my slightly altered version for the teaching profession.  You can see the original Gibbs Rules here and the version for the medical profession which inspired this post here.

Rule 1a: "Never let mischiefs sit together."
Rule 1b: "Never screw over your team."
Rule 2: "Always wear gloves to deal with nose bleeds."
Rule 3a: "Don't believe what you're told by a child. Always double check.”
Rule 3b: "Never be unreachable…in fact always keep many lines of communication open: email, text, call, fax, tweet etc."
Rule 4: "The best way to keep a secret? Keep it to yourself. Second best? Tell one other person. But remember to choose carefully…there is no third best.”
Rule 5: "You don't waste good staff room food – all must go."
Rule 6: "Never say “please” when managing behaviour, say “thank you”."
Rule 7: "Always make sure the real you is “in the toilet” when you teach in role."
Rule 8: "Never take anything for granted, especially not the sacred glue stick."
Rule 9: "Never go anywhere without a pen and a tissue."
Rule 10: "Getting personally involved is a part of the job."
Rule 11: "The job is NEVER done."
Rule 12: "Never date a co-worker."
Rule 13: "Never, ever ask or involve the health and safety officer."
Rule 14: "Bend the line when you have to (see Rule 13)."
Rule 15: "Always work as a team."
Rule 16: "Always have the upper hand – be at least one step ahead of the kids."
Rule 18: "It's better to seek forgiveness than ask permission (see Rule 13).”
Rule 22: "Never ever bother the IT technicians – just turn it off and on, check the batteries and wiggle some wires because that’s all they’ll do!"
Rule 23: "Never mess with a teacher’s morning cup of tea…if you want to live."
Rule 27: "There are two ways to mark the books. First way – tick and stamp.  Second way – in depth marking.  Second way wins – see Rule 11."
Rule 35: "Always watch out for the quiet ones.”
Rule 36: "If you feel like you are being played, you probably are."
Rule 38: "Your class, your realm…except when you’re being observed."
Rule 39: "There is no such thing as coincidence."
Rule 40: "If it seems like someone is out to get you, they are."
Rule 42: "Never accept a forced apology from a child."
Rule 44: "First things first, hide all the dirty mugs at the end of the day."
Rule 45: "Get the kids to clean up the mess they make – otherwise you spend your whole life doing it."
Rule 51: "Sometimes you're wrong…but you were just checking to see who was listening.  “Well done for spotting my deliberate mistake”!!"

Rule 69: "Never trust a head who doesn't trust their deputy."

What rules would you add or change? 


  1. beautiful!! Very well done!!! :) xx

  2. I'd add: " Build & maintain good relations with the people who really run the school - caretaking and secretarial staff."
    I'd modify Rule 38 to read: " Your lesson, your responsibility."
    Gibbs-based teaching works for me.

  3. This is so cool!!!!!
    But you need a rule 70, "Keep digging till you hit bottom"


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