Monday, October 5, 2015

Why Do I Teach?

Most days I love being a teacher. But lately? I'm not so sure anymore. The job is tougher than it was when I first began teaching 14 years ago. Sure the kids are the same, but the stakes are higher, the support is lower, and the standards are more rigorous.

There are days - lots of them - when I feel like I have a giant target on my back and every parent in my class is gunning for me. It doesn't matter that my homework is posted on a website I created, or that I send home weekly -- or sometimes daily -- messages to my families so they know what's happening in my classroom. Someone is always unhappy. I don't communicate enough. I communicate too much. I give too much homework. I don't give enough homework. You get the picture, right?

It's enough to make any teacher ask themselves, "Why do I teach?"

Good Lord, let me tell ya, it's a question I have asked myself time and time again. Some days, I don't have an answer to that question.

And then you get a message like this one from a former student.

This is why I teach. For kids like this one. 

Yes, honey, I will help you. 

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