I absolutely love teachers. I believe that they are the kindest, most giving individuals on the face of the earth. Sure, there are a couple of bad apples in the barrel, but overwhelmingly, teachers are unbelievably dedicated and caring. They put in long, hard hours without any reward other than the smile of a child as he/she learns something new. And they do it day after day for every individual they run into.
Having said all of that, I must also admit that, at times, teachers can be a quirky lot. Maybe it’s being cooped up with no other adults to talk to so much of every day. Or dealing with all of the almost useless paperwork they have to complete. Or never being thanked enough for all that they do. Whatever the cause, teachers can sometimes exhibit, well, let’s call it “unusual” behavior.
Over the next few months, I would like to take a somewhat irreverent look at educators and what they do. I hope that it will make you laugh and better appreciate these very important folks. (Disclaimer: No teachers were harmed in the making of this blog post.)
You Might Be an Elementary Teacher If…
You start getting your classroom ready for the new school year two months in advance. (It takes a long time to cut out all of those bulletin board letters and create all of those innovative centers!)
You often spend your time with very strange people and don’t think anything about it.
Your back is bent at a permanent 90 degree angle from always leaning over a student’s desk.
You not only own every Crayola color there is, but can easily recognize them all by name.
You view every empty fast food container as a possible art project.
You believe that a day where no one threw up or cried is a good day.
You can tell the weather outside and the current phase of the moon simply by watching your students for 30 seconds.
Your hand feels empty if it’s not holding a pair of scissors or a rubber stamper.
One of your happiest days is when the new bulletin board supplies come in at the local teacher store.
You automatically help others at the table with their food when dining out.
You answer to the name of “Miss,” “Teacher,” and “Mom.”
You try not to call in sick because it will cause you more work and stress than just showing up.
Moving to a new classroom involves your spouse, two teacher friends, and three days of carrying an unbelievable number of boxes stuffed with manipulatives, art supplies, books, and other “necessary teaching tools.”
The news that the faculty meeting was cancelled makes you dance down the hall.
You find yourself trying to organize children you see at the mall into small groups for sharing time.
You know all of the really frightening places that glitter can end up on the human body.
You’ve stopped praying for patience because you learned that all that got you was chances to practice patience, and you have plenty of those already.
You find yourself saying things that no one else can understand:
- “Don’t lick the desk!”
- “No, you can’t possibly have to go to the bathroom 14 times in one hour.”
- “You have three younger brothers and your mom says they all want to be in my class? That’s just wonderful.”
- “Please cover your mouth when you… Never mind.”
- “Yes, I know we have inside recess again today.”
- “Being the first in line doesn’t win you a prize.”
- “What do you mean you wanted to find out what the hand sanitizer tasted like?”
- “I’m sorry, Principal Smith, that my room looks like I’m losing a game of Jumanji.”
- “If you’re not bleeding or dying, please sit down for a minute.”
- “Who took the lids off all of the markers and the glue sticks?”
You lie in bed at night unable to sleep, worrying about the needs of a particular student.
You spend hundreds, if not thousands, of dollars of your own money on snacks for hungry kids, books for those without them to read, classroom supplies to engage your students, and items for holiday parties.
Your best moment is when you see a student who has been struggling finally grasp a new concept.