Friday, November 16, 2012

For the love of teaching....

I'm getting personal here. Right now you could say I'm in a funk. I'm not happy with my job--in fact you could say right now I resent it--big time. I resent that it is taken over my life. My brain is always on teaching. My desk at work is full of mountains of papers to correct or pass out. All I talk to my husband about is what crazy, stupid thing some of my 9th grade boys did. I don't look forward to school because I know I must tackle more and more.

Don't get me wrong.  I love teaching--it is all I've ever wanted to do, my passion. I love teachers, my kiddos, seeing students light up when they get a concept, decorating my classroom, even working on curriculum. I will talk theory with the best of best, mentor, join book clubs on educational topics... you name it. I will tout my kiddos accomplishments till the cows come home. I guess you could call me a "teacher nerd" and I love it.

I know that when I choose this profession (dare I say it chose me?) that it would become a defining part of my identity. That my life would be about other peoples children, giving up my time to chaperone field trips, advise clubs, attend football games and school musicals, write curriculum, and finding out what is best for my students learning, not my teaching style. It is who it I am, who I want be, and I totally accepting of it. But for the love of  all things high school, I would love to do something without feeling guilty about the ungraded papers, the lesson that needs tweeked, journal articles, or goals that await me.    

What do I mean? I want to be able to work at decorating my house, put my son to bed,  finish the book on toddler behavior I've been reading for months, or talk to my sister on the phone without feeling guilty about the stack of papers I left on my desk. I want to drink a cup of tea and watch my favorite tv show on Sunday night without doing something lesson plan related.  To peruse Pinterest without pinning dozens of class ideas. The list goes on and on.

I know that life is about balance, but what is it about teaching and feeling guilty about having a life outside of school? We are not superheros, we are human and we need to take time for ourselves. I know I do, but right now, I'm not. I have to start taking time for me, but it so hard to do when you are pulled in so many directions. I'm up for suggestions if you have any, because right now I am suffering.

1 comment:

  1. Kate, I know exactly how you feel. My short and painful tenure as a teacher in rural NC put me into a funk for a very long time. After some time, I realized, it was not the kids that drove me out of teaching, but that particular administration who allowed the kids to run the school. Now, I wonder if I shouldn't get back into teaching, or is it too late? I do love teaching, but Anson County knocked me out cold.

    Please know I care for and pray for you. YOU are one of the people who helped me realize I am a good teacher, because you demonstrated what a good teacher does and is! Thank you, Kate.

    Will Spahr