Monday, March 31, 2014

Why I Love Teaching

Per my last post, it is obvious it has been a trying week for me at school. Not only have I been having a hard time, but some students have been struggling due to being close to the teacher that passed away since they were in Model UN which was the club the teacher proctored. On Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday, there were times where I had another teacher cover my classes so I could sit and let these girls talk. Or the girls would have study hall and just come in my room and relax so that they would not have to be in complete silence (like our study hall requires).

Beginning on Friday, the girls that were struggling as well as some other juniors that I had taught for two years in a row, started to stop by to ask me how I was doing. It isn't that they were over their grief, it was that they knew I was grieving as well.

This past week has been one of the hardest of my life so I tried to think of something positive. It wasn't hard today to realize that the most positive thing in my life is teaching. Yeah, it is stressful and there are days I want to scream due to losing patience with my students, but overall, I enjoy it. So to remind myself that there are positive things in life and to have a less depressing post, I present you with the following list.

5 Reasons Why I Love Teaching

  1. My students that I currently have. One of them sent me the following picture in an email to try and make me feel better. I printed it out in color and it is now hanging on my door to remind everyone else as well. Not only did I receive this but they have also been super patient with me both in class and outside of it. They have been on their best behavior recently and they haven't bugged me about why I haven't gotten their tests graded that they took on Monday. They know I'm struggling so they are giving me time and space. Regardless of the times when annoy me, in general I care about my students and it is nice to know that they care about me.

  2. My former students. So many juniors (juniors because I taught the majority of them two years in a row) have stopped by my classroom to use the scented hand sanitizer that I keep on my desk as an excuse to ask me how I'm doing. Most of them are on a "bathroom break" from their class so that they could just pop in to ask me if I was okay. One even made me the card/picture below (the blurry parts are my doing to blur out names). I started to tear up at it because I knew they cared about me.

  3. Students I haven't even taught. The girls that are struggling from Model UN knew I was close to the teacher so they have been coming to me for comfort since they know I feel just like they do. I have never taught any of them. This morning, they cam in with cookies (because I need to make sure I eat) and a card. I was yet again reminded of how many lives I touched just by doing my job even if the part of my job I'm doing isn't the actual "teaching" part. The card read:

    You have no idea how much your support has meant to us. An escape to your room may seem simple, but it helped SO much to get away, even just for a few minutes. It helps so much to talk to someone who understands. I hope you are getting better everyday, and know that you meant a lot to him. He'll always be watching over us, and, if you need anything, or just a hug, we'll always be here for you. #MUNislife
  4. Influencing every day. What this event has taught me is that I'm influencing students every day even if I don't realize it. It is sometimes hard to realize why I do my job or if I'm actually impacting students since many times they just sit there and stare. I'm never actually sure if what I'm trying to teach them gets through. This past week, however, I know for a fact that I have at least taught them compassion. They may not remember why Moore wrote Utopia but they know when a person is suffering and actually care.
  5. I am surprised everyday. Sometimes these surprises are upsetting like learning a student has depression, that I didn't expect, or that they had a parent that passed away. However, most of the time, I am surprised in a good way such as learning that my students care so much or that they made sure they learned the material so I wouldn't get frustrated at them. Sometimes it is as small as learning that one of my students actually finds my jokes funny or remembered the fact I had told them the previous day in class. Regardless, I love that my students can surprise me every day and that, for the most part, it is a good surprise. I wouldn't trade that for the world. 

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