This is the time in the school year where I am most reminded, most excited, most content about teaching.
I teach for right now, this moment, when I can sit back and look at my students and marvel at their progress.
This is the time of year when I am most reminded of the purpose, beauty, and benefits of teaching. My students each year were different people at the end of the year, my class was completely different from the first day of school. My students were more mature, more independent, and more lively at the end of the year. I would look at their work I had saved during the first couple of weeks and compare it to now, the end of the year, and feel accomplished and proud–not just of them, but of myself. We had come a long way, we had achieved so much.
Teaching is hard. It is exhausting. It can be trying. At the end of the year, during those final weeks, I am reminded that I teach in order to grow and help others grow. That duty, and that service, is challenging and rewarding; so, I keep teaching, I keep choosing this amazing profession.
I teach because it is honorable.
It sounds self-righteous, even sanctimonious, but I’m doing good work. I’m in a time-honored profession. I mold lives. I’m a positive force for the present, and the future.
I feel good because I’m contributing to the future and our collective well-being. I don’t think it’s terrible to say, or point out, that teaching is noble. It is the only profession that paves the way for every other profession.
I enjoying teaching and I take pride in being a teacher–it is truly an admirable career choice.
In what other profession can you come to work . . .
- in your pajamas (spirit day)
- with crazy hair (spirit day)
- in costume (Halloween, spirit day)
- in sweats or athletic gear (coaches, PE teachers, game days, field trips)
- with that ridiculous hat you bought at Disneyland (spirit day)
There are plenty of fun days in teaching–fun days that encourage everyone to let their silly side come out, or their comfy side show.
There’s plenty of reasons to smile in teaching–the fact that sometimes you get to go to work in comfy clothing, or get to be a little ridiculous, that is definitely a big perk. 😊
Time to get a little real about the benefits and joys of teaching:
- Guaranteed breaks, holidays, and weekends
I am guaranteed every major holiday, and every weekend, which, in the United States in particular, is incredible.
I work hard. I work long hours. I’m exhausted. Nevertheless, I know that I get days away from work–guaranteed.
I know that if I want to spend a national holiday somewhere, I can do it. I know I have every weekend to run errands. I know that I have a week or two break in the middle of the year built into my schedule.
I earned these days, and I have to take them, which in the United States in particular, is a definitive perk.
I have friends that barely have two weeks worth of paid vacation and/or sick days. I have friends who never get a chance to use their paid time off, and then lose those days. When it’s not demanded or required, it’s not used. Paid leave–in all its forms–is a privilege. So, I love and cherish breaks, weekends, and holidays; they’re definitely a bonus. It’s not why I chose teaching, but as I get older it’s definitely an enticing reason to stay in teaching.