So, as I start my 10th year at Unnamed Junior High School, I'm thinking seriously about where I want to be in the next 10 years.
I mean, I love my life right now, but 10 years from now, will it still be the life I want? I'm not sure.
Teaching is the most important contribution I've made so far in my life. Yes, I'm a good friend, and a wonderful daughter, but I've made a difference as a teacher. If I had gone down the path of marriage and parenthood, I might think differently, but I've not reached either of those roads so far, and may never (although hope still springs eternal in this middle-aged heart).
The political climate regarding teaching is starting to wear on me.
Last year I threw out almost every thing I'd ever created to teach from the red textbook from Holt. I kept to the schedule, even when it made no sense. I spent at least one class period a week on spelling, because that's the area administration decided upon which we would focus. More than halfway through the year, the English chair decided we would adopt the Sheri Henderson way of teaching writing, and we had no say in that decision. So, yet again, I threw out something (this time, something not even well-tried) for the newest "solution."
I think most people, at least most thinking people, agree that giving everyone the exact same education is not giving everyone a fair education, yet that's what's happening. This crap about being on the same page on the same day in every eighth grade classroom in the district is actually being given consideration.
I have a friend who homeschools. I don't agree with her on many things, and obviously, I support public education, but she and I see eye to eye on one thing: teachers, for the most part, are in it for the betterment of others.
Although I hate when people say it's a "calling" or "noble," you and I both know I didn't go into it for money or fame. No. I teach because it's what I do best. I teach because I'm getting paid to care about other people, and their futures, I teach because it's interesting, and I teach because it makes me happy.
The political stuff? Not so much.