Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Thank You?

When was the last time you were thanked for staying late because a student of yours was the last kid to be picked up?  When was the last time you arrived early because another student needed help in Math and you teach Science?  When was the last time someone you work with said Thank You?  We spend so much time teaching our students how to be contributing members of our society that sometimes we forget to thank the other people working WITH us not against us.  I am not one of those people who believes in rainbows and puppies only, but think about this.  At one point or another most teachers became teachers because they "wanted to be the change in the world" thanks ghandi.  You have to want to be a part of something to deal with our LONG hours, growing piles of paperwork (not grading related), cranky parents, cranky staff members, students (big and small), overcrowded classrooms, and germs just to name a few.  I started thinking about this post because morale at my school stinks.  We are in the middle of renovations (which will ultimately turn our school into an elementary school), have almost an entirely new staff, some of the old staff are those old scary teachers you read about in horror stories, the administration keeps piling more and more and more for us to do, and of course people are cranky.  I am cranky!  I am on the verge of burn out but do you know what keeps me going back each day?  My kids!  I have two small classes due to the reading program I teach and today more than half of the kids were taking another test so I had 7 kids, so I decided to try something new and it worked.  It was wonderful!  I gave each student a piece of notebook paper and then I wrote one sentence on top that they had to finish, I gave each student about a minute to read and write on each story and then we read them aloud as a group.  They were hilarious!  My kids kept wanting to this silly assignment but the best part?  No fighting, no arguing, and they were writing (willingly.)  While this assignment was going on I had a student come up to me to tell me he really enjoyed my class because he knew I cared.  Those two reasons right there are why I go back each and every day.  So, I challenge you to two things followers!  1 - Thank something that you work with for doing a great job!  Don't mock them and say hey great job at making copies, but be sincere.  We all need a thank you now and then.  2- Tell me why you go to work everyday.  I'm honestly curious as to why each and everyone of you (ok all 66 of you) do what you do everyday.  Are you a stay at home mom?  Why did you chose to stay home? 

Here is my Thank You to my 66 readers.  I started this blog to keep in touch with friends and am starting to understand there are other frustrated but truly wonderful teachers out there, so thank you for putting up with the silly things in order to touch the hearts.  Thank you! 


M said...

Hey Mrs B,
I know what you mean... about Thanking people we work with and about morale and about "why" we do the job we do. I do it because even though I deal with crappy behaviour from some of my students and difficult administration, I get to see real progress with my students. I know that I am making a difference. I see improvements in their behaviour and their writing and their reading and their maths and I get to be an adult who says positive things to them. I love teaching and the kids are the real reason I make the trek into school everyday. I can live with the stupid administration as long as they let me be in the classroom. Thanks Mrs B for making a difference in your classroom and for sharing on your blog. You helped me to feel like I am not alone, after a yucky day.
I am so trying your writing activity in my class next week!
:) M

Dawn said...

Hi Mrs. B! First, I want you to know how much respect and admiration I have for you and all of the other great teachers out there. I feel incredibly fortunate my children have had such dedicated people shaping them.

I stay at home and have done so for over sixteen year because at the time I strongly believed it was the best thing for my children. However, now that my youngest is nine and it's time to start thinking about a job again, I wonder if I made the right choice. Did I "waste" the last sixteen years tying up my whole identity as wife and mother? I suppose every profession second guesses from time to time.

Overcaffeinated and Optimistic said...

We also have crummy morale, and we're WAY too big for our building... I go to work every day for the little moments. For the girl that could see fine about 6 months ago and will be blind in a year, who loves me and works her hiney off in class after giving me a big hug and telling me how much she loves my class every day. I work for the underdogs. I love to see that lightbulb and watch the wonder in their eyes when they learn something new. I take special pride in succeeding at figuring out what they need and learning how to help them succeed in the classroom instead of spend all their time outside.

I'll be thanking coworkers soon, but in the meantime.... Thanks for this post! We all need reminders sometimes. :) Spread the cheer!

The Cavallaro's said...

Just stumbled across your blog and I couldn't agree with you more! I am already feeling burn out (actually, I was feeling it before school even started) and it's been pretty tough on me. The morale at my school stinks as well and it's frustrating. I put in 12-13 hour days EVERY. SINGLE. DAY. and all my admin says is "You shouldn't stay late" well, duh, I know that. But, I know how much my kiddos need me and how much help they need. Sad to see that there is no thanks for those of us who go the extra mile to help our kiddos. You are doing great work!! KEEP IT UP! Newest follower :)

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