Teaching is Hard

Teaching is an incredibly difficult profession. You make hundreds of judgement calls and snap decisions each day. You manage the behavior of 20-30 students who are each an individual who requires attention, reinforcement, rewards, encouragement, motivation and of course, the actual content knowledge you are trying to teach them. You have to teach the content in a variety of ways, have them repeat the skills and provide accommodations and differentiation so each student learns the skills and content fully. You have to grade the student’s work and give it back with feedback that informs them how to improve without making them feel poorly about their work. You have to manage petty conflicts between students, ensuring each feels they were supported, that they learned from the encounter and can move on. You have to manage an entire community of learners, support positivity and encourage compassion for each other. You have to communicate with parents constantly, coming up with positive things to say so that when the not-so-positive things come, they will actually listen. You have to gain parent’s trust, show competency so they feel their kids are spending time with a trusted, knowledgeable adult 6-7 hours a day. You have to teach Content, Standards, Skills and Test-Taking. You also have to teach Social and Emotional Strategies, how to interact with others, how to have a conversation, how to give and take feedback and criticism, how to make friends, how to deal with those you don’t get along with, the list goes on.

All of this can feel impossible or at the least, overwhelming. How is one or two or even three adults supposed to not only teach students Math, Social Studies, English, and Science but also How To Be A Fucking Person?? How to not be an asshole? How to Function In Society? How to Care About Others Instead of just Yourself? Things even many adults struggle with?

But this is all expected of you, if not by others, it is definitely expected by you of yourself. You spend so much time with these kids, how can you do any less than try to prepare them for the rest of their lives?  And this is my job. And I think I enjoy it. Some days more than others.

This post doesn’t really have any point to make. It is simply a rant, a venting of pent-up frustration at times as well as an acceptance of the path I’ve taken. Take it for what it’s worth.