I went through a roller coaster of emotions this week. I felt lost. I felt proud. I felt underprepared. I felt defeated. I felt insufficient. I felt accomplished. I felt overwhelmed. Mais, ultimement je pense que j’étais à la recherche de mon identité… Has anyone found it? I think I lost it somewhere?
I lived a lot of self doubt this week, in relations to my efficiency of being a teacher. And, that confidence I had last week faded. Why you ask? I’m not exactly sure because nothing went terrible, I just simply felt as though I was trying to stay afloat and survive my 3 periods each day. However, I look forward to finding more of a rhythm, where I can have a system, keep things in order and flow from class to class.
PUTting ME TO THE TEST...
The first week of teaching really showed me that the students will test you no matter if you are a student teacher, a new teacher starting out or even a teacher they have never met/seen before.. This can happen with any class at any age. That being said, I was often tested this week, which made me question some of my teaching values, beliefs, strategies and philosophies. Some questions I have been pondering are: What kind of teacher do I want to be? How do I want to be perceived by the students?
shh, listen... YOUR BODY IS TELLING YOU SOMETHING
I would never have guessed how much my body would indicate how I was feeling. I noticed by Thursday that my shoulders were up to my ears. And last week, even though it was only 3 days, my legs were finished. All of the stresses of teaching truly affects your body. And Wednesday, for the first time in forever, I needed and wanted to go for a run to let out the emotions and energy inside of me from the day. I think the lesson here is the importance to take time out of the day to listen to your body. And, understand that some days you’re going to need a run, others a nap and others... well...
The best thing about going into your old high school is the conversations you get the have with old teachers. I have gotten the chance to be mentored, guided and supported, not only by my associate teachers but also by some other teachers in and around the school. Whether it was for future school board choices, whether giving a pop quiz is a good idea or not, or even how to deal with students who might decide to disrespect you... I have had some insightful conversations with multiple teachers who have given me some great tips and advice along with expressing their excitement to soon having me in the profession.
I even received a heartwarming and supportive message from a teacher that I had worked with during a paid position. Unexpectedly, this teacher reached out, wished me well and offered her support if I ever had any questions. This made me extremely happy and showed me that creating relationships with staff members is just as important as those with students. I admire that teacher for everything she does in the classroom. She has no idea how much a simple message affected me so greatly.
some good advice...
Speaking of supportive staff, during an on call supply - I was accompanied by a teacher I know fairly well. We spent the period together and afterwards got to chatting (as teachers usually do I've noticed). And, as expressing how overwhelming teaching can be at first she simply said:
"just be the best that you can be"
She continued to explain that she found it difficult in her first years of teaching and quickly realized that "you can’t do it all, so just do what you can..". This advice is going to stick with me. And, when I am feeling flustered or defeated I will recall those 8 simple words.
All this being said, I am feeling confident for next week! I am optimistic to regain my confidence, continue to learn about and from students as well as vary my teaching styles to test out new things!