I’ve only been a teacher for a few months but already this job has tested me and pushed me to my limits. I’ve seen worse days, but not much worse. But also I’ve had few days better than these.
Let’s be honest, kids are hard work. Especially when you’re partially responsible for their moral upbringing and trying to help them understand the wonder of God’s love when all they want to do is play agario or snapchat each other. (Oh, the joy of middle schoolers!)
Lately, I’ve had some challenges. Some have been small; others, larger. Sometimes I have to pick my battles and sometimes it feels like I’m trying to quell a mountain of misbehavior. Sometimes though…sometimes everything goes right. My lesson is well executed and engaging, students are on-task or at least responsive to my behavior plan, and I would be proud to have an administrator stop by and witness the learning taking place. It’s in those moments that I remember why I became a teacher.
But it’s not just in those moments. And I need to remember that.
Other times, I’m reminded why I became a teacher when I have a one-on-one conversation with a student that I hope helps them see why certain behaviors are needed. Or I’m reminded when I’m grading a particularly excellent assignment where I can see the student really got it. When I see a struggling student succeed, when a bright but lazy student turns in an assignment that shows not just promise but effort, when I can laugh with my students…these are moments in which I love my job.
And I do. Despite all it throws at me, I love teaching. It’s my calling. If nothing else, I know it’s where I’m supposed to be right now. And until He says “move” I’m staying.
This is the first post in a series reflecting on my struggles and joys as a first year teacher. Click on the category “From the Messy Desk” to see more soon.