It's that time again. August has rolled around and teachers everywhere are getting back into their classrooms after the floor-polishing and wall-painting and building maintenance that takes place in July.
The posts are already starting to pop up on Facebook:
Got into my classroom today.
Starting on bulletin boards, ugh.
Anybody know of any good math centers? I'm setting up this week.
Three years in a row, I have quit teaching in June. Two of those years, it only lasted till August. When those "Got-into-my-classroom" posts started cropping up on Facebook, I started opening a new tab. Cruising the local district employment websites. Placing a bid just to see if I'd get it.
I'm determined this year not to return to public schooling. Last year, I was off my game. Tired. Negative. I did my best by those kids, but my best wasn't as good last year as it was in school years past. I did not leave with a sense of having done well, of having made lasting changes. I left with the sense that we had, all of us, just barely kept our heads above water.
Bad metaphor, actually, given that the town flooded not two weeks after I left it.
I will teach this year, just not in a public school. I will work with children, but I will not have a classroom. This is both good and bad. It's good because I can focus on the needs of each individual child in the program that's offered me work come fall. It's also good because I won't be staying in public education long enough to completely lose my faith in it. But it's bad because ... because ...
Man, I really like having a classroom.
I'm happy with my choices. This is a good move, mental-health-wise. It's a good move, career-wise. It's a good move, interest-wise. So I'll stay strong as my Facebook friends dangle lesson plans and teacher's desks and literacy centers in front of me. I will pour my creative energy into writing instead of materials creation. I will block the district websites from my computer.
But if anybody needs a bulletin board created? I'm your girl.