This post is in conjunction with the January blog a day challenge.
The fact that I’m 37 and have been in education in some way as a student or a teacher myself, I’ve had a lot of experience with teachers. Some have been great and some haven’t been worth the paper their degree was printed on.
Teachers get a lot of flak. People think they get paid too much for the amount of time they work. People think they are lazy because they get summers off. There was never a vacation or summer where I wasn’t trying to get things ready for the following year, or working as a teacher to pay the bills. They were long, lean years, but I don’t regret any moment of them, even when things didn’t work out, even when I was betrayed by fellow teachers I respected (and who in the end showed no respect to me.)
People think that teachers are glorified babysitters or are clearly the reason that schools were closed in the UK because of weather that could have caused serious issues if schools had been opened.
(I know it doesn’t snow a lot here in the UK, but you have to understand that if the weather is inclement there could be transportation delays or serious accidents involving children. It’s about safety not about laziness or greed. I dare anyone who thinks that teachers are the ones who decide that schools close because they are LAZY tell me that to my face.)
Anyways, getting off my soapbox now, I have to say out of all of my jobs that teaching has been the hardest and most rewarding, not to mention hardest to get. It was hard, hard work. Many, many times I had to spend money out of my own pocket to get materials I needed for my classroom. Many, many times I went to bat to get assistance for kids when the system had failed them.
I may have not been the best or the most perfect teacher. I always gave second, third, seventeenth chances. I always was there to listen, to give advice, to support them in all areas of their lives, to try to make a difference like one teacher did for me when I needed the support, advice, and a shoulder to cry on the most.
Ever since I was in middle school, I’ve wanted to teach, and I am very grateful that I have had that chance, and hope to have the opportunity and privilege in the future.