We make a difference

I remind myself of this every morning when I step into my classroom. Iā€™m responsible for 140+ souls throughout the day – I pray I do right by them.

What’s something you live by? Share your teaching philosophy in the comments below šŸ‘‡šŸ»šŸ‘‡šŸ»

From one insecure soul to another — Part 3 (and finale)

Okay, Kristine, we get it. You were insecure and measured yourself against others’ success instead of your own. We’re human – we all do it – so, what?

I realized I spent my three years running away. I taught a zero-hour class, which meant I was free and clear by 1:20 p.m., every day. And as often as I could, I hauled ass away from the school by 2:00 p.m. – mainly because I had college classes to teach beginning at 2:45 p.m. This was all fine and good — but it got to an unhealthy point where I booked myself solid, maxing out on the number of classes an adjunct can teach in a given semester (9 credit hours), all for what purpose?

To prove my MA wasn’t a waste of time or money? To prove that I can teach secondary AND post-secondary students? To whom? Myself? My peers? Why? What were the benefits?

I honestly do not know.

What I do know is that if I had stayed, I would have continued this unhealthy pattern of running away and avoiding reality. My leaving was more about my sanity than it was to move on from somewhere where I felt like I was constantly being judged, raked through the coals, and spit out. Let me go on record to say that my department chair, my department, and my principals were all phenomenal — they were my reason for remaining sane. However, it was the constant struggle against a machine that wasn’t privy to my daily contributions that squashed my will to stay and fight.

I focused my energy on my “why” — reflecting on the reason(s) for having a mid-life career change into this beautiful, wonderful field that I call “home.” I landed at a 7-12 secondary school, teaching 8th graders (middle schoolers are FUN!), and falling back in love with my craft. I stopped being an adjunct instructor because my cup was being filled at my “day” job. I stopped running away and I stayed put.

What I found at the end of this year was a school I want to retire from, my “forever school.” I have felt more support and unspoken recognition than I’ve felt in the past couple of years, and I finally heard, “You’re the expert, we trust you.” And to me, that’s priceless.