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Sundays

It looks like one of those nights that, even though I’ve already put five or so hours into lesson plans, I’ll still be working on creating materials and homework until just before bed. The occurrence of these long-houred Sundays is one thing that has not changed since my first year teaching. Of course now I’m much less stressed (though not stress free by any means.. Something I’m working on) and much more intentional about my work.
I’m not going to lie… I don’t exactly enjoy these Sundays. Unfortunately I’m not that TFA corps member who finds inherent joy in writing the minute details like learning targets and what-scholars-should-be-doing-at-all-times into my lessons. I’m more energized by the results: 3rd grade Joshaun ditching his too-cool-to-be-happy-in-school attitude and getting amped on presenting his badass Spanish book to the class, uber genius Niya tearing through her independent work and writing a completely comprehensible story in Spanish just for fun, or Jada composing a HILARIOUS story that I never imagined myself. These times when my kids get into a state of flow with their Spanish work don’t exactly happen often perse… But when they do they add fuel to my Sunday planning sessions.
Ever since I was little my Dad has repeated the mantra, “Every job sucks, that’s why they pay you to do it.” Being a huge believer in vocation, I find his philosophy a bit problematic. Which is it? My brain asks, do we just need to find a job that’s good enough and make ourselves like it? Or should we dig deep to find out what we’re “meant” to do and strive to give our gifts where they’re needed?
Maybe it’s a combination of the two. I don’t think we should ever abandon our natural inclinations. To a certain extent, perhaps we can bring whatever type of person we are to any job title. What I’m realizing more and more is that nothing is as official as it seems. Yes, I’m a Spanish teacher but I can teach Spanish in a way that is completely unique to the teacher at the school a neighborhood over. I will undoubtably bring my weird creativity and simultaneous need for systems and structure to any job I do. This is not to say that just anyone can step into a highly specialized role. No, perhaps the important thing is that we are all authentic in the work we do. I certainly struggle with this at times, questioning whether my way is the right way, but researching best practices often just validates my instinctual methods.
Anyway, I want this blog to be a place that inspires a bit of thought and conversation. So, if you feel inclined, reach out, pose a question or answer that challenges my really crowded brain!

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