Everyone out there seems so full of love for the students and the job that it carries them through the long hours, but it hasn't been enough for me to break out of the vicious cycle of frantic work and procrastination I've been stuck in since first grade.
This is as good a description of teaching's tumultuous first year as you'll find out there on the blogs. It also summarizes:
- teaching's great deception — "love your students and the rest will follow."
- teaching's jarring transition — from sleepwalking into your 08h00 MAT 180 class to teaching your own classroom of sleepwalkers where every bad work habit you've accumulated over your entire life pays off huge negative returns.
Let's table this post for a few years. It took me five years to feel even a little put-together in this job, to feel like I wasn't just scrambling to keep pace, but I give Alison half that.
Had I gone to grad school this year, I would have put some time into a collage of new teacher profiles. Not my kind of new teacher. Not the traditionally inducted teacher, two mentors assigned by his district over two years, mentors who in all likelihood teach an unrelated subject. The sort of new teacher aptly described by statistics like "50% attrition rate."
Let's assemble a control group. We'll have the experimental group spamming questions at jackieb, jdyer, dcox21, colleenk, samjshah, k8nowak, sweenwsweens, dgreenedcp, et al, while blogging the experience as time permits.
I don't know if it's any kind of model. I only know it would've made me a much happier teacher, much sooner.