Thursday, October 17, 2013

The shine came off it

The shine is off the teaching gig.  (Just like it is off marriage and child-rearing and every other thing in life.)

I am still enjoying myself tremendously, but a parent complained to my boss about the books I had chosen which made me doubt myself in the classroom and my literature choices and everything about taking this position.

It's been nearly a decade since I've taught, so I had been able to put a nice rose-colored patina on my time in the classroom, forgetting how many times parents weren't always and in every case 100% happy with what I did.

My skin is thin after all these years.

It has taken almost two weeks for me to stop thinking every phone call is a potential parent complaint, that every email is going to be a parent with concerns.

I know I am a good teacher.  I know because there have been numerous times when my students have said, "Well, I never thought about it like that" or "I didn't pay any attention to that" with their eyes agog with realization.  Because I was able to say last week to my high school students, "I wonder what someone would think if they walked in here and tried to decipher this stuff on the whiteboard:  Atticus Finch, Aslan, Jesus, Batman (not the hero they want, but the hero they need)."

I know because in all this work I am doing and have done to prepare to discuss these novels, I am learning so much, and if I am learning (having read these books at least a couple times and at age 40 with life experience under my belt) then I know these young people under my wings have to be learning too.

This is my story, and I'm sticking with it.

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