Tuesday, August 9, 2011


Today, I put on teacher clothes. I drove to the high school where I'll be student teaching this semester. I put on a brave face and walked through the doors to meet the cheery (yet, intimidating) faces of 30, 40, and 50-something year-old teachers busily preparing for the first day of teacher orientation.

I've spent 22 years on the other side of the desk. It was odd to sit in teacher orientation meetings talking about budgets, diversity, test scores, and Parent Night. We gathered for 3-4 hours for teacher's meetings and a short session of Speed Dating as an ice breaker. It was such a strange feeling to be sitting there with 85 or so "old" people who were joking and acting like kids. I suppose one should expect that in a school.

After meetings, both of my cooperating teachers Mr. G and Mr. F, met with me to discuss what classes I'll be teaching this semester. The list as of now involves:
-two sections of gifted freshman English
-two sections of American literature
-one section of Popular Culture
(Wow, that list seemed so much more overwhelming when I was looking at it earlier today)

The rest of the afternoon was basically spent sitting around, moving a few desks, observing, and being introduced to several people whose names I can't remember. Except Sue. I remember Sue.

I truly believe that our attitudes can dramatically change the course of our lives. That's why it concerns me that mine has been less-than-stellar.

I walked to my car in the warm afternoon sun, waddling with an abundance of books, folders, and supplies I didn't need. I plopped down in the driver's seat and wanted to cry. This just doesn't feel right. I wish it did. I wish it immediately felt right. I'm not sure I want to be a teacher.

When I tell people what I'm studying in school, they say, "Oh, so you're going to be an English teacher."

And I usually say, "Well, at the end of the semester, I will sure be certified to be one."

My friend, Mr. Blake would say, "HB, the more you say that, the more you are going to believe it."

Darn, him.


Anonymous said...

you can do this
you are doing this
you do not have to love this
you have options
this is a beginning

xfr said...

I heard you speak in BC a couple weeks ago. It was nice to hear your story out loud and interesting to hear it from the perspective of several years later. Thanks for sharing.

I hope you'll write a little about your classes. The gifted freshman English class sounds intriguing--but, they all do, really. I imagined you as a great teacher while reading your blogs. I hope you'll give yourself an honest chance with it. Good luck!

Joelle said...

The good news Heather is that this can be a temporary thing. Try it. You may find you like it. My grandmother is 75 years old and to this days she says, "I still don't know what I want to be when I grow up." She has been a housewife, owned her own fabric store, sold insurance, sold homes, owned her own restaurant twice, worked for human services, flew and owned her own aerial spraying business. I still at 75 she is working as recreation coordinator at the nursing home in Tekamah, NE. She really wasn't kidding and she tried it all. So can you.