I don’t know how far along in life you’ll look back at this. I’m just kinda hoping you remember to. Remember that you did this favour to yourself. Actually, will you even be better at remembering? I’m so poor at it now so who knows but you now, right?! 😀
A-ny-ways…I’m writing this with the fear that one day you will reach a point in your career, a point(s) that can make you or break you, as a teacher. A point where you will think of the one thing that could turn your work upside down: ‘Why did I ever choose teaching?’ -_-
It’s interesting and kinda funny how I’m thinking of horrors yet to come from so early on. If you do look at this in say after 25 years, it might mean you just need a break because you’ve been standing in front of a class of students for too long. Heck, maybe even retire. If it’s in 15 years it wouldn’t be too bad either…I guess Questioning yourself then might mean management needs to change (trust me there’s always a management issue!).
But if after 10 years you’re looking at this post, well then…I really hope you’re not in tears. Is it really that bad? It better not be that one kid that’s always a waste of space, because they’re never bloody worth it!!! But if it is, you need to pull yourself together. You’ve gone stupid, not soft. It’s better to cry over your stapler not working.
Ok, let me come back to the present. You’re working at the moment and you’re going to start training in a few months. You’re already tutoring and you’re looking forward to reading the books on the A-Level programme because you’re going to have to deliver lessons on them soon. Lesson’s you used to role play as a child and then later continued to do as an adult. Lessons where you look forward to students discussing things like why this quote questions the meaning of life? Or what does it mean to be a hero? ^_^
And right now, you are scared. You’ve always been scared of it, but your ambition to have it is greater. At the moment, you’re like those end-of-the-line joggers at the back of the race; cautiously moving along but still moving forward.
And recently you’ve had an old mentee tell you they’ve been accepted into a good university for English Lit and you were so proud you went in and gave her ‘a mum hug’. And you had those kids in your Saturday class tell you how fun your lessons are. And you know you smiled and your heart hit cloud 7 when you saw how they dragged their feet out of Maths but soon their eyes lit up as soon as they saw you.
Let me go on a bit longer.
You’ve recently had to invigilate an exam where all your students for Law looked up and smiled knowing you were there. Because you kept telling them things would be alright, and you always agreed to mark their essays 🙂
Then, not forgetting the most important thing of all; when your Sunday class student said “You’re the best teacher I’ve ever had. I’m going to miss you” and in a funny way you were more happy with relief than just the flattery. Because you kept doubting yourself. You sometimes saw the faces and thought you weren’t doing a good job, that you were wasting their time, that basically you weren’t teaching!
We have thought about leaving teaching early to focus on writing. So maybe you’re already on a sabbatical? Or maybe you’ve already left teaching for good. If that’s the case…I hope it was a good ride. But what I hope for more is that you left because you wanted to try something new and not because you hated teaching.
I think that’s why I’m really writing this. I’m scared you’re going to turn out being the very thing you hated in a teacher. So far, the English departments (across schools and colleges) seem to be the most sarcastic about teaching and the most miserable O_O They will quote Shakespeare and laugh at a student’s work, rise grudgingly from their seats to deliver a lesson. Put on a film for 3 lessons straight because they can’t be bothered. And they will forget to help a student they know who needed them.
From the present you, talking about Literature is the highlight of the day. If that ever where to stop, then I hope you’ve left teaching altogether. Because then it means you’ve fallen out of love.
This is a looong letter. I hope you read all of it. No skim reading like you do in marking. Make sure you’ve been by yourself whilst reading this (probably should have put this at the top). Don’t ignore me because I’m younger. This version of you that writes and has tried to reach you beyond time and film is a you that’s pure. I have passion. I have love. I have hope. I have dreams. I have potential. I have happiness. I have all that I need to get you to where you will be. I am still you!
And I hope I reached you Miss C