What a day. Teacher Appreciation Week and the day of a local levy for my hometown school district in Ohio. As I see people coming out on social media to thank their teachers or argue in favor or against this levy, I reflected on my day. Below will be an outline of my school day. Before you look at it, I want to make one thing clear–I’m no saint. I’m never the first teacher in my school and I’m never the last one to leave. I have the fewest classes to prepare and the most off hours of anyone in my school because I’m a new teacher and so that I can craft a curriculum from scratch [thank you!!]. So read this thinking about the time you spent with your teachers–the moments they weren’t paid for, the time you asked for help, when they attended an academic game or event. That’s why I know I’m nowhere near special–because I work with the most self-sacrificing individuals every day and was fortunate to have been taught by these superheroes as well.
6:15 AM: An iced coffee from Starbucks. Get those caffeinated juices flowing!
6:25 AM: Walk into school, finish preparing the day’s lesson by adding some completed problems to my power point.
6:40 AM: A senior who is finishing a math course online to graduate comes in. We work through some problems for about 40 minutes until the daily staff meeting.
7:50 AM: One of my favorite parts of the day. Daily chapel! Unfortunately, one of my homeroom girls is out of uniform. Again. After chapel, I walk her down to the office. I tell her if anything is going on she wants to talk about, she should let me know.
8:55 AM: My first 100 minute block of geometry. I’ve had the last 40 minutes to work on tomorrow’s lesson and I’m psyched to see my kids. They aren’t happy that they aren’t working in groups as much, but some of them understand that we aren’t being very productive.
10:45 AM: Prep hour! I work through tomorrow’s word problems, trying to scaffold them so my lower level students can still work with them. I call 2 parents about their child’s detention that afternoon.
12:00 PM: Study hall with my lovely home room girls. These ladies go through things at home that I can’t dream of. So they’re usually grumbling about the amount of homework they have or staying after school. However, they are trying pretty hard to get along with one another. My chapel girl comes to collect her work–she’s having a tough time and I’m pretty sure she hates me right now. But she’s got a great heart and has SO much potential.
2:15 PM: I say goodbye to my second geometry class and make 3 more phone calls. More detention! Although I can’t complain. None of them try to fight the consequence, and almost every student finished their exit ticket. While my classroom has improved x 100 since September, I’m still pushing them to complete more difficult problems and some of them are struggling.
3:20 PM: After 15 minutes of home room (we’re doing surveys), I check in students for overtime and detention. I change into my running clothes–one of my more challenging ladies hasn’t gotten kicked out of class in a week and loves to run, so we head down to the park.
4:30 PM: In my classroom grading the day’s practice. I try to make at least 2 meaningful comments on each paper, but it doesn’t feel like enough. We have a quiz tomorrow and we’re still struggling with absolute value equations.
5:05 PM: Out the door! Heading to the gym to lift weights.
7:00 PM: Finishing up tomorrow’s lesson and submitting my final paper for a graduate class at Marquette. Law and Order SVU is on my Hulu Plus as I work [a guilty pleasure].
Once again, this isn’t NEAR the amount that some of your teachers put in. I fight the feeling each day that I’m not doing enough, that I’m not good enough yet. I watch my colleagues go above and beyond every single day and to be honest, that’s why inspires me more than anything.
Thank you, THANK YOU to my teachers, professors, administrators, and support staff at Orrville City Schools and Marietta College. The countless hours I spent seeking the counsel of my teachers on their off hours or after school, the van rides with sports coaches to extra track meets, the celebration with my college professors when I got this job after graduation. It’s immeasurable. These are the experiences that money cannot buy. You’re more than appreciated…you’re cherished.