Do you remember those childhood cartoons where the dog (also substitute cat, mouse, roadrunner, etc.) falls or hits their head and the small stars (or birds) circle them?
That’s me right now. Except the circling stars have been replaced by neon colored sticky notes.
In fact, this was my first-day-of-school face:
Although I taught last year, I didn’t start at the beginning of the year. This is e.x.h.a.u.s.t.i.n.g…. I am getting to school an hour early in order to go home on time, but I end up staying another hour after school anyway! And then I come home and think of a thousand more things that need to be done. I reply to e-mails, put in grades, update the seating charts because there is a new student added every day… the list never stops. It’s a good thing I am a list maker!
Being the new kid.
A friend of mine just began teaching for the first time, too. She tells me that it’s frustrating because she is expected to complete tasks that no one has told her about. I can totally relate! Especially starting after that first day. No one talks to you about emergency procedures, technology issues, accommodations…. until something comes up and then you ask. Luckily, my experience is that fellow teachers are happy to help. Yet, no one knows what you need to get started.
Don’t even get me started on the education lingo! This is acronym city! “Did you read the IEP for that ESE?” “Didn’t you find the DOK? It’s in your MTPs, just go to IMS.” “Let’s talk about helping the ELLs study for the CFE later in our PLC.”
When I started, I had someone sit down and go through a list of acronyms I had heard and explain them one by one. It gets overwhelming pretty fast.
It will get better.
Ha. That’s what they all say. Now I find myself saying it, too. Because it’s true. Teaching is stressful, but once the routine sets in… all will settle back down.
This job has really become a valuable part of my transition from twenty-something to thirty-something. I am feeling more established, more in control, and (in basic terms) more adult. My life has adopted some routine, which works well for me. I do still feel like my life is evolving and each day is different from the one before, but I know what to expect and when to expect it. And while I may have bad days or feel like it’s too much… I know my hard work pays off, because I know I can teach these kids. I know I can help.
After my nap.
It’s all about balance! Oh well, here’s to growing up!
Any new kid stories from you? Share it below!