To continue teaching, you must let go of the idea that everything must be perfect. As much as I want every lesson to be the best lesson ever, it is not possible. I believe that through blogging it can appear that my classroom and lessons are perfect. They are not. Here are some ways that I use help:
- I use ideas and hand-outs from other teachers. I do not rely on the textbook for everything, but if I had to create every single thing for three preps, I would go crazy. I would also stay up very late. I need sleep (well everyone does!) I could get nine hours of sleep, and I could still take a nap. Plus, no one benefits when I am cranky. There are some days when I would like to use my own stories in Spanish, but I use someone else’s stories because I run out of time. It’s ok!
- I also let go of some ideas. I was at a session that talked about how to integrate culture into all of your lessons. Let’s say you are talking about where people are from. You should use people from the target culture instead of random names and countries. You can also find infographics about different cultures food when discussing food. I definitely incorporate some of these techniques into my classes, but I cannot manage to do this every day. I don’t feel guilty about this. I do this when I can, and I will eventually have resources for all of my units.
- You have to forgive yourself if you do not get everything done on your to do list. I try to grade my students’ tests and quizzes within two days. However, if it takes three days, that is ok. If you are consistent most of the time, students will understand when you take an extra day.
These are not revolutionary ideas, but I hope that they help you to let go of some things. I believe that you can be an excellent teacher without staying up until 11 PM and working all summer.