This past school year I have had the privilege to teach 8th grade reading and writing - English Language Arts. But I not only changed grade levels, moving from 3rd to 8th, I also changed school districts.
Teaching 8th grade has been one of the biggest challenges I have faced, and I know I am the better for it. There have been some rough days where I wondered,
“Am I really going to make it through this?”
“How many days until June?”
But when I look at the calendar, I see the reflection of how much stronger, how much wiser, how much more patient I am. I see the progress of how far I’ve come. How many mornings I’ve woken up with the anxiety of what the day would bring, what kind of shenanigans would happen, and even worse - the success I could have.
The last few months of teaching 8th grade and the lack of finding resources has led me to think that I need to come back to my blog. I had abandoned it because I wasn’t passionate about it. I started a blog for all the wrong reasons:
- because it seemed like what I was supposed to do.
- because other teachers had blogs, other teachers made connections, other teachers were so happy – it seemed – with roses and rainbows and pots of gold and little leprechauns dancing around the screen.
That’s what my eyes and my mind were seeing. I felt like I wasn’t living up to that. I was tired. I was tired of not being surrounded by the teachers I was reading about on computer screens. If teachers were blogging, then surely I just needed to find a new school where I would certainly find teachers who wanted to blog and create and try new things in their classrooms. Right? Of course those teachers were out there, they just weren’t in the one school that I was in. . .
So I got tired. I had mentally exhausted myself. I didn’t love my blog. I was jealous of what others had. I wanted it for myself but it wasn’t being handed to me, as if I deserved it on a silver platter brought to me by Shemar Moore (Derek Morgan on Criminal Minds) [insert emoji heart eyes face] ;) I even paid for a blog design thinking that would inspire me to blog more.
[Anybody familiar with Psalm 23:5? “Thou prepares a table before me in the presence of mine enemies” ? … yea, I’m my own worst enemy.]
Even after spending all that money, I haven’t blogged much.
Then I began researching how it was going for others in middle school. I was having such a hard time adjusting that I felt like I was doing something wrong. But I wasn’t coming up with what I wanted. I wasn’t finding the support I thought I was looking for. Eventually, after a few weeks of searching, I had an epiphany – there isn’t much from middle school teachers because it just doesn’t exist. Here I am, looking for support for middle school when I needed to step up and voice what I could on the subject. If there’s something I’ve learned from taking Lucy’s (Calkins) classes, it’s this:
you have something worth sharing with the teaching community.
I need to be writing. And so, today, my imaginary goal/wish list that exists in the confines of my brain needs to be relayed to one of the flair pens chillin’ in my agenda and become a reality. I’ve been mentally telling myself that I should aim to blog once a week; that’s manageable. Yet, it wasn’t happening. I wasn’t making it a priority. There were times when I had the mental fortitude and motivation to blog, yet actually sitting down, typing, and actually – hold on, I might choke – publish such thinking, such words, might kill me. Or so I thought.
Which has brought me to this post. This post is a start of a reflection on all the things I think about during Lucy’s fieldwork class. How inspired I am to write and actually think through my thoughts, organize them to be ready to share my knowledge with the greater education community. I have something worth sharing. Doesn’t matter if anyone listens. It will fall on the ears of those who need to read it. I need to be faithful, though, to what I want. [Side note: now accepting any and all applicants for keeping me accountable. Being my fairy blogmother.]