I have come to fall in love with teaching in Catholic schools. What are YOU in love with?...

"Nothing is more practical than finding God, that is, than falling in love in a quite absolute, final way. What you are in love with, what seizes your imagination, will affect everything. It will decide what will get you out of bed in the morning, what you will do with your evenings, how you will spend your weekends, what you read, who you know, what breaks your heart, and what amazes you with joy and gratitude. Fall in love, stay in love, and it will decide everything." - Pedro Arrupe

Friday, January 23, 2015

I'm Glad There Are Other Teachers Here

"I'm glad there are other teachers here," one woman in my Strengths for the Journey group at Church mentioned last night.

And isn't that true? When we find others who are battling the same struggles (large or small) as we are, it helps the rest of us make sense of it all. It's the feeling of "Oh really? You too? Good. I thought it was just me..."

For teachers, it's easy to often feel like a failure: kids/teens/college kids interrupting or disengaged, lesson plans not fully fleshed out, too many papers to stay on top of... But then, at moments like a few of us had last night, it becomes clearer. Sometimes, kids will be kids, and they're more interested in each other and their cell phones than the class content...Sometimes a lesson plan is a flop...We're not meant to be on top of everything.

And that's so freeing to remember from time to time!

So, as I make my to-do list for the weekend, which, coincidentally, includes a LOT of grading and lesson/activity preparations, I need to remember to keep it all in perspective. I can't beat myself up over not reaching that ideal state of the perfect teacher that I  (and, likely, so many of us) have dreamed up in our heads. What's more important is to focus on the here and now (in the classroom) - meeting the kids where they're at, showing patience (yet firmness) at the same time, and not losing my cool. (They're 12.)

Nobody's perfect. Each day is a chance to keep going.

And so, today, I'll do the best I can, and what's left undone, I'll start tackling tomorrow...

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