Thursday, September 29, 2011

Stages of Teaching

Over the years, I've come to realize that the school year consists of several stages for a teacher.  I believe they go in this basic order:

June:  Euphoria.  All the problems from the previous year are gone, and we will never think of them again.

July-Early AugustDementia.  We use these months to forget that we ever taught in the first place.

As if you needed a visual to wonder
why I'm a little crazy.
Late AugustGnawing Apprehensiveness.  We know we should be doing something (planning) but are conveniently putting it out of our minds.  Instead we go to the pool, shop our hearts out and act like people who don't work for a living.  We pretend everything is normal, even though it isn't.

SeptemberAcceptance Mixed With Excitement.  Despite the fact that we are inundated with boring meetings, and the stress that accompanies the first days of school, we have the sense that the year will be fantastic, simply because we want it to be.  Our classes will be perfect.  We will never forget to go to a meeting.  Each lesson will be unique, engaging and will fill their young minds with interesting information.  We have accepted that we are back, and are making the best of it.   We may attend a happy hour at the end of the first week, but could skip it if we wanted to.

Mid-SeptemberAmnesia.  We have this uncanny feeling that we've been here before, and it frightens us.  We start to long for the Friday happy hour.

Late SeptemberRealization.  We HAVE been here before.  Only two months ago, in fact, and it is just as we remembered.  This is also when the panic sets in that we still have eight months left to go before the Euphoria stage will return.  Friday happy hour becomes mandatory.

Early OctoberLonging.  We actually start wishing we had last year's kids, a feeling we never thought we would experience.  Ever.  Our minds, which are ill-prepared to accept this reality, start to go mad at this point, which is why so many children think their teachers are a little crazy.  We begin to consider the mid-week happy hour as well. 

I'm between the Late-September Realization stage and the Early October Longing stage.  If I start to sound insane in my blogs in the coming weeks, don't be surprised.

Beth - 1  (One more week till crazy-town!)
Students - 1  (They are driving me there)

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