It is almost the end of the year…I think it calls for a special post. Theme song post time!
I have actually been thinking about this one for a while. The song is “Hello” by Adele. The song is great, but lately I have started to think about my teaching life and the different versions of my teacher self throughout the school year.
What if I could call and talk to myself at the beginning of the year? What would I say? What would I hold back? Would I advise? Would I apologize? I don’t know…but I am going to give it a shot here. Please “listen in” on my conversation with myself and think about what you might say to yourself.
Oh, and I realize that this is a just a cover of the original song, but I really like this version…so click play and then read on.
We need to talk.
First of all, I would just like to say, you are so awesome! Your ideas and energy. It is why I teach. You know that you are going to make a difference this year, and I love you for this. Don’t lose that. Never lose that.
Hello from the other side.
This is going to be a rough year. You are going to face trials and troubles like you have never seen. You are going to have your teaching heart broken. You are going to want to quit.
You will really consider it.
I wish I would have gotten in touch with you sooner.
I have needed your spark and light.
There are going to be times that the spark is going to almost be extinguished and that light is going to dim.
I am sorry to tell you, but you are barely going to make it through the year alive (as a teacher).
I have barely made it.
I am barely here.
Your full-on sprint at the beginning of the year is going to taper down to where I am right now. I am crawling to the finish line. And I can barely breathe. I am barely teacher living.
I am sorry for what I have done to you.
I really am.
Hello from the other side.
Let me just assure of one undeniable truth. From where I am right now, it was worth it.
I can see where our students have come from and how far they’ve come. We have made a difference. We have changed lives. We have done everything that your optimistic heart hoped and dreamed for this year. We’ve done it!
You will be completely drained, beat-up, and exhausted, but you have affected the lives of your students for forever. Amazing things have happened in our classroom this year. There has been magic. There has been wonder.
Do not give up the fight.
It will all be worth it in the end!
Hello from the other side…
Thanks for reading my little message to myself. Did you see yourself in this? Could you have the same conversation with your beginning-of-the-year-you?
You know, no matter what happened this year, beautiful things happened in that classroom of yours. Magic and life change did occur. Everything you went through was worth it for the sake of your students. To help remind you of this, I want to close this note to you with a few more teachers stories of classroom beauty and magic that happened this year. And if you would like to share a story of wonder from your classroom, you can do so here.
Teacher Michelle – Kindergarten
I work hard on creating a family out of my class of kindergarteners. They come from very low income homes and have very rough lives. In my classroom we work hard on creating relationships and bonding.It can get really hard, but the rewards are worth it.
Recently a child in my class won a ticket to Six Flags for being the only one who completed the required minutes of reading and turned the paper in. when i announced it to my class, i honestly expected to hear a lot of whining and “why didnt I get one!?” But INSTEAD… when i made the announcement my ENTIRE CLASS began applauding and shouting out “good job!” and “good for you!”
That was the day I knew we were a family.
Teacher Joanne – High School (Retired)
I retired from full time teaching and now work as an office manager for a national tax preparation company.
During the season, I was assisting a client who was accompanied by one of my former students, a friend of hers. She asked him if he had done his taxes yet, and he said, “Oh yes, Ms. Maura taught us all about it in finance class.” I wanted to hug him, but I said, “Thank God someone was paying attention that day!” I won’t also mention all of the greetings I get in the community (I live in the city where I taught for 20+ years).
Teacher Alice – High School
My first year of teaching was a challenging experience, as it is for many teachers. I was teaching 6-7 periods a day, and my classes were mutli-leveled ESL classes. In one class, I had everything from a level one (absolute beginner) to 5 (advanced, ready to transition to mainstream) in the same class. I struggled mightily.
At the end of the year, I assigned the students to write a thank you letter to someone in the building that had made a difference for them during the year. One sweet, upper level student, who had been an immense help to me in that challenging class, placed her note on my desk at the end of the class and told me to open it. The text of the note read, “thank you, thank you, thank you! One thank you for all you taught me this year, one thank you for being there for me, and one thank you for how you change my life. Always remember this, Miss: stars need darkness to shine. I may not know how to write a letter, but I know there is not a wrong way to say thank you.” I sat at my desk and bawled.
Teacher, you are making a difference and have done amazing work this year! You are so awesome! Please know that everything you went through this year was worth. You have had a greater effect than you will ever know. Thanks for all that you do! Hold on…the year is almost over! Keep on doing the incredible things you do and keep on teaching, Teacher!
PS…Dear Teacher/Love Teacher is looking for a little help. Check this out for more information. Thanks!