Today, I expected an easy day in my classes-- they had quizzes and tests to do, and for once I got all of my teacher-type work done early. I expected to be able to either work ahead or kick back a bit.
Oh, that was not how today went at all.
Today I came into work with very little stress. Hband had generously let me end our date night at 9:30 when I fell asleep watching "30 Rock." Yeah, that's how our date nights roll: Little Caesar's pizza that we later regret and what was supposed to be a "30 Rock" marathon. It ended after I couldn't keep my eyes open during the second episode. So I got almost 9 hours of sleep last night, which is what I get if I'm lucky on a weekend night. So waking up was a pleasure. Going to school with a chill, holding my hot chocolate was a delight. Heck, even standing outside for twenty minutes because of "morning duty" had its charms.
And then, I had my 6th period journalism class.
This year, I was assigned to teach journalism. Awesome-- I love journalism. You know what I don't love? Having to be the yearbook advisor, which is what journalism is short for, I guess. I had no background in composing a yearbook. I didn't do it in high school. All I knew was that when my dad created it all by himself, he'd be sitting at the dining room table, giggling to himself as he swapped heads and wrote in voice balloons. I was pretty sure that's not how we'd be composing the yearbook. To top it off, I also had to jump-start a school newspaper.
After I got the hang of it, it started going OK. We were in a groove.
Then came the tsunami. Suddenly a deadline is upon us and the students aren't ready. I'm not ready. The stupid photographers aren't ready because they haven't sent us the portraits. I lost some paperwork. I have a hundred questions. I'm the one taking pictures because no one else takes initiative and I don't want them to have a crappy yearbook.
So I'm overwhelmed. What I'd really like to do is let them take control. Let them steer this sinking boat straight to the bottom of the ocean. But I feel like I can't let them do that, because not only am I not guaranteed they'd learn anything about responsibilities, deadlines, creativity, or hard work, but it would let all the 7th-12th grade students down.
Why are teachers paid so poorly, again?