I need a class


It is the last full week of summer.

This is my last chance to rest, relax, read romance novels, buy new shoes.   In a week, I will be knee deep in lesson plans, parent meetings, read alouds, math papers and homework.

And I am totally OK with that.

See, here’s the thing.

I don’t have any kids at home any more.  I don’t have anyone who needs me to cook or clean or wash anything.  I don’t have anyone here who wants to go to the zoo, or the beach, or the farmer’s market or the neighbor’s house.  I’m just sort of sitting here all day.

And that was fun in June!  I planted, I weeded, I walked the dogs.  I read a lot of books and wrote part of a story.  I called friends, went to lunch, researched some local history.  Fun!

Sort of.

By July, that whole thing was getting stale. I took a two week class, went on some trips, read some more books.  Rested.  A lot.  But…..

I’m really, really ready to be back at school, in a room full of children who are looking up at me with interest and humor and skepticism.  I’m ready to be on the spot, in the hot seat, under the gun.

And this is why.

When I am teaching, I have a list of tasks that need to be accomplished each day. I can do them, check them off, then feel really good about having done them all.

When I am teaching, I see children smiling at me. I hear them laugh.   I experience those moments, every single day, when something that I say clicks for someone.

When I am teaching, I feel useful.  I feel needed.  I know that my approval brings children a sense of comfort and security.   I know that at night, someone dreams of me (even if it is a funny or crazy or scary dream….I’m in it!) I have a job to do, every day, and every night when I come home, I know that I have done it.

When I am teaching, I have a sense of who I am, and what I bring to the world.

I need school to start.  I need a place to go, where children are waiting to see me.  I need a routine, a list of chores, a set of expectations.

I literally cannot imagine myself at a time in my life when I am not a key figure in the lives of children.

I need my class!!

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8 responses to this post.

  1. Your post brought tears to my eyes. Thanks for the inspiration–I needed it.

    Best wishes for a great year. I have a feeling you’re a terrific teacher.

    Reply

    • You’re welcome! I hope that we all have a great year! I don’t know how terrific I am, but I really do like spending my day with kids.
      If only I could keep the adults away!

      Reply

      • A student gave me a little plaque a few years ago that read, “Teachers who love teaching create students who love learning.”

        Don’t be so modest–Your obvious passion for your students and your profession suggests you’re an amazing teacher!

      • What a great quote! I’m going to hang it in my classroom, if you don’t mind! Really inspiring……
        Thanks!!!

  2. Posted by Katrina on August 16, 2012 at 10:29 am

    I love this post! I left the classroom a year ago so that I would actually have time to write my dissertation. While I’ve enjoyed the change of pace, and kept busier than expected, I miss the kids more than ever now–especially in August. I always loved the excitement of planning the new year, getting my classroom set up, and meeting my new students. I’ll have to share your words with my teacher friends who aren’t always quite as excited about the end to summer!

    Reply

    • Wow, good luck with your dissertation! What is your topic? I’m so impressed….one of my “after retirement” dreams is to get that doctorate!
      Thanks for your enthusiasm, and for sharing my thoughts with friends. I hope you’ll come back to the classroom at some point!

      Reply

      • Posted by Katrina on August 19, 2012 at 5:34 pm

        You should definitely go for that doctorate! I’m studies focus on social justice education–I tend to do more philosophy and theory of education. I’ve already shared your posts with some friends and they loved it! I’m hoping that I make it back to the classroom sometime soon as well. Good luck with your year! I hope it’s a fabulous one!

      • Thanks, for the encouragement and for sharing my posts! I am very impressed with your choice of topic! At this point in our history, both nationally and educationally, I believe that justice and human rights need to be a key part of the discussion in classrooms and government. Best of luck! Karen

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