With the current economic downturn, I have many friends who are quitting/ losing their jobs and trying to "make a difference in the world." Many of them are lured by a job that has the summers off and gets out a 3PM-- teaching! I need to be balanced in my discussion of the realities of teaching. Each day I teach a kid something- and usually something about more than just history- about life. I truly feel I make a difference with the students I teach. I also love the process of intellectual growth. I will often teach about a subject I never studied--like the Arab-Israeli Conflict--do a whole bunch of research and then try to make the subject accessible and interesting to a group of 12-13 year olds. I thrive on the challenge. But, all of this comes from a lot of REALLY hard work. Those summers and afternoons "off" are often spent tirelessly preparing for the next school year.
I am not sure why all this is hitting me at once, but I do so much for my students. Just tonight, I wrote about 10 e-mails to students and parents who had a last minute question about my test tomorrow... and of course, I am writing the tests, after all the review sheets, Jeopardy review games, and lessons. This is all while I am taking care of the girls in the dorm... lots of drama tonight- it happens with teenage girls! Off to take brownies out of the oven... just baked for a 14th birthday tomorrow!