The Important Things
I love my job. To be able to come into school every day and have the opportunity to stimulate the curiosity and thinking of my students gives me such joy that I can’t help but smile. The looks on their faces when they finally understand a difficult lesson make everything worthwhile. Each day is a new adventure filled with discovery, wonder, awe, excitement, and variety. I am blessed with an exciting job.
My students are fantastic. They love school, they love learning, they are respectful, kind, caring, funny, well-behaved and quick-witted. They laugh heartily at my lame (but still hilarious to me) Chuck Norris jokes. They keep me on my toes with their clever comments and deep questions. I am blessed to have wonderful students.
My students’ parents, too, are all very supportive of me as a teacher and the school in general. Clear communication and strong relationships mean that any problems that come up are resolved quickly and correctly. I have the privilege of talking to my students’ parents face to face at least one time a week, and often more than that. I am blessed to have great relationships with my parents.
I can’t forget to mention my colleagues, too. We all have a shared vision of how the school should run. We are all involved in decision-making. We communicate with one another, and we support each other completely. I am blessed to work with excellent colleagues.
On top of all this, my school is connected with a church that offers an extensive personal support system for the teachers. Our church and school leadership are very sensitive to our needs and concerns. We always have a voice, and our opinions are respected as professionals in our field. I am blessed with a loving and supportive congregation.
The idea for this post started out as a grumble about the lack of technology available to my students. After starting the first paragraph, however, I realized that I don’t really have a whole lot to complain about. After finishing the first five paragraphs, I had to give myself a mental slap in the face for feeling frustrated. I am in a situation that many teachers would give up all their district’s testing budget to be in.
Teaching is about relationships. The most advanced, child-centered, research-based classroom is nothing without a loving teacher to nurture those students into becoming the kinds of people that they should be. All the latest gadgets and computer programs will never replace a teacher who has developed strong relationships and trust with his students because a computer program can’t teach a child to think, to reason, to work with others, or to develop a sensitivity to the many differences among people in this world.
I can do without the technology. I can’t do without the relationships. Thank you, God, for giving me what I need and not always what I want.