Saturday, October 18, 2014

My random teacher thoughts.....
By Tracy Hart 

There has never been even one day where I have been able to follow my schedule or lesson plan exactly, whether it's an assembly, or I'm dealing with loose teeth, vomit, or tears, and I always feel guilty when I have to "modify and adjust."
After each school day ends I still have a minimum of an hour of work to do, either from school or my house. It doesn't stop at 3:30 each day, and I haven't figured out how to leave it without feeling guilty.
I work every weekend.
I hate grading tests, but I love when I get to draw a big 100% smiley face on them.
Sometimes I get frustrated because I see three week old papers in my students' backpacks. Then it reminds me to check my son's backpack.
I take it personal when I see other educators being bashed on social media.
I get disgusted and embarrassed when I see educators on the news for doing inappropriate things.
I often answer texts and phone calls at 6 a.m. and 10:00 p.m.... with questions that could have been answered if only the caller had read the newsletter I sent home on Monday.
I've bought school supplies, lice shampoo, deodorant, shoes, clothes, and food for my students.
During the school day, I only sit down for a total of an hour and a half while I'm doing reading groups with my students. I used to love wearing heels, but Dr. Scholls aren't looking too bad anymore.
I can't leave my kids unattended, so on the days I have duty I have one 15 minute break to use the restroom.
If my doctor or my son's orthodontist calls me during the day I feel guilty answering my phone, and I could possibly get in trouble for answering it, also.
It blows my mind the way that some students talk to and treat their teacher.
It blows my mind that there's not much that can be done about it, either.
It blows my mind the way that some parents talk to and treat their child's teacher. Oh wait...
There are days that I get sick of hearing myself talk and I start picturing myself as the Charlie Brown teacher. Wha wha wha wha wha...
I spend over $500 a year in/on my class. (Shhh... Not sure my husband knows this one!)
I am required to get more professional development each year than a doctor or lawyer.
The funniest thing you could say to me-or any teacher- is, "Well, you're off all summer!"
My first year as a teacher I left the funeral home from planning my mom's funeral to go to my Open House. On the first day of school I went to school to greet my new kiddos that morning, and then I left at noon to bury my mother. I don't regret that for one second. My kiddos needed me that morning. But I needed them more.
I always get a little nervous on conference day.
Calling in and planning for a substitute is more difficult than just going to work sick. I feel guilty everytime I have to call my principal for a sub.
I have taught lessons that flopped. I have written spelling and grammatical errors in class. Sometimes I write the wrong answer to a math problem on the board. I show my students that it's ok to make mistakes. Kids understand this and forgive easier than adults.
I wish my kids could have more recess and less tests.
In between the standards I'm required to teach, I'm also teaching how to hold a pencil, handwriting, shoe tying, proper hand washing procedures, how to make eye contact, social skills, how to sneeze in your elbow instead of on your friends, self control, and how to color in the lines. Yes, coloring in the lines is important.
I insist that my students clean up our floor every afternoon. It is not the custodian's job to pick up after us.
It makes me sad that our cafeteria workers are amazing cooks, yet their hands are tied, so they can't use salt, sugar or anything pre-packaged when preparing breakfast and lunch. Kids don't like plain food. Sometimes I just want to scream, "Bring back the cinnamon rolls!"
I greet my students at the door each morning and fist bump or hug (their choice) each student as they leave each afternoon.
I cry every time I have to call DHS.
I don't believe everything kids tell me about home, and I hope parents don't believe everything kids tell them about school.
I don't teach "Common Core." I teach kids.
The best teacher appreciation gifts I've ever gotten are the drawings, art projects, cards, and letters from my students. Not to mention one little boy's most prized possession, a large dog tooth, that he wrapped up and presented me with at Christmas.
I have high expectations for each of my students, and I often wake up in the middle of the night with ideas how I can help my struggling students.
Kids are the best teachers.
I love seeing when my students have that "light bulb moment."
My kids understand Fair is what comes around once a year in October. They know they each get what THEY need to be successful, and it may not be what their neighbor gets.
When I get my class list each year, the first thing I do is pray for each of my students.
By the second week of school each year I have fallen completely in love with each of my students and feel like they're mine.
I've never been as exhausted as I have from teaching, but I've never loved a job more, either.
There is no doubt in my mind that I would die protecting any child in my building.
At 7:30 Monday morning I'm excited for the busy, fun-filled week ahead. By 3:30 Friday afternoon I am completely exhausted.
If it sounds like I'm griping and complaining about my job, you're wrong. I've worked at Wendy's, Maybelline, a gas station, Little Caesars, several day care facilities, and I've been a paraprofessional in a school. Nothing is as fulfilling as seeing my students' sweet, eager faces each day and celebrating as we learn something new. I just wish people weren't so quick to criticize and complain about teachers. Come to my class. See for yourself. Ask ME if you don't like or understand something I'm doing. If you have a suggestion, I'm always open to new ideas. Just please, please know that I, and other teachers, wouldn't be there if we didn't love what we do. And more importantly- who we do it for.

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