As I sit here ready to go to the Freshman Dinner for the 9th grade, I have been reflecting this week on what they never tell you before you become a teacher. I became a teacher because I wanted to spice up the way students learned a language. I was living in Spain thinking about how wonderful it is and wanting students to experience it. I really did not think about how much working with students would affect me.
Even though I started working with students, they were still abstract to me. I was not a babysitter, and I really did not have a lot of experience working with children. I wanted to teach Spanish because I loved Spanish. While that in and of itself is good, that is not why I keep teaching.
Each day, I wake up, and I realize how blessed I am to work with these students. They are pretty amazing. They are kind. They are funny. They are creative. They are learning. They ask interesting questions. They all look at the world in a different light. I enjoy our conversations each day. I want to teach ALL of them. I am sad when they move on to another teacher, but I am excited to get to teach some more students and get to know them better. When they tell me that they wish I was their teacher, I sincerely do as well.
When I was studying to become a teacher, I did not realize that I would want the best for each of my students. If they are upset, I am upset too. I get frustrated when my students are not treated well by life or by others. When they succeed, I am so proud. I cannot express the joy I feel to watch students perform at a pep rally, game or musical. I am happy for the rest of the day to see my students doing something so well. It has been a blessing to be let into their lives. I am so thankful to the parents for letting me teach their children.
To future teachers, I hope that you definitely learn everything that you can while you are studying, but I hope that you remember that the best part is on the other side- and that is the relationships that you will build with all of your students. Even though I have tried to capture it here, I do not think that I cannot adequately do so. This is what I remember on the long, frustrating days. This is why I teach.