I'm not a very reactive person, at least not quickly. I tend to hang back, collect information, and take time to process before responding--especially in times of stress. So, here I am now, nearly three weeks into this new way of life--this new way of teaching--just now responding.
And my opinion probably won't be the popular one. But it's my truest one.
If we’re not returning May 1, the powers that be just need to declare the school year done. Over. No more virtual learning. Not because I'm a lazy employee. Not because I don't care about the education of our kids. But rather because I care--about our kids, our families, our teachers, and the integrity of what we're calling education
When did it become "mean" or "bad" to enforce rules, limits, boundaries, or consequences of any kind? When did setting restrictions become synonymous with lacking empathy?
I suppose some would say I'm pretty liberal when it comes to discipline with kids in the sense that I see misbehavior not as something to squash, but as a call for help--a plea for the adults in their life to dig deeper and give them the tools they need. They don't know what they don't know, so a child's behavior is the language they speak when they can't articulate their needs. I suppose this is true with adults, too. However, pain or ignorance is not a free pass--personal responsibility plays a role
I recently heard a well-known relationship expert who has been married over 30 years say that the "secret" to her enduring marriage isn't so much a particular set of habits or actions, but more a willingness on both their parts to allow the relationship to continually evolve. She said "I've had many different marriages, all with the same man."
While I won't pretend to have her expertise or experience--my husband and I have been together 11 years & married 8--I already get exactly what she's saying. Even after roughly a decade together, I can see how a marriage has different "incarnations".
One of my hesitations about marriage, and probably one of the reasons I waited until my 30's to marry, was that I had trouble picturing that two separate people--each with their own dreams & goals--would realistically be able to change together . What I've come to see in my own relationship is that a marriage can survive your individual changes, as long as you allow it room to--as long as you're not trying to hang onto & force what it once was.
Millions of people all over the United States are pumped for tomorrow's big Super Bowl game but I'm not one of them. I know, I know, I'm un-American and don't know how to have fun, blah, blah. When I was 20 I didn't want anyone to think that so I acted like I cared or half-understood the game, but I own it now. Because the only guy I care about impressing is my husband and I think he's on to me by now, given the fact that for the past ten Super Bowls I've only come into the room to hover over the snacks & watch the halftime show.
If you're one of the tens of people that are with me on this, read on--you're not alone! If you're one of the millions not with me it's okay, you can go get your snacks prepped for tomorrow (or continue to read and then comment about what a stick-in-the-mud I am).
I was grabbing a smoothie one morning when a familiar face walked into the store, a former coworker of mine from public school. We greeted each other and she asked where I was currently teaching. I told her I had recently taken a position at a private Montessori school. Her mouth formed into a pained expression and she leaned in close, “ooh, how is that? Ya know, working with those kinda kids?”
My heart started to race & the Mama Bear in me started to stir. Because I knew exactly what she meant by that question--I got different forms of it all the time. The implication behind the questions is usually that they are incapable of doing things on their own or are entitled.
I’d been through this before so I took a deep breath to tame the bear and calmly told her the truth. “Honestly... ‘those kids’ are no different than the kids I taught in public school. Some are entitled, others are not. Some are gifted, others have significant learning disabilities. Some come from wealthy families, some don’t. We have a mix of different kids, just like anywhere else.”
I shamelessly admit that I’m a goal-setting kinda chick--big on self-improvement and setting intentions so that I'm (hopefully) always continuing to grow. The way I figure, it's difficult to reach a new, exciting destination if you've given little to no thought where you’d like to end up.
I'm aware some find people like me annoying. Ya know, the camp that thinks resolutions are pointless because we humans are likely to fold after the shine of the new year dulls. While I can't deny that's it's just in my DNA to be a goal-getter, I do recognize that follow-through is likely the biggest stumbling block to accomplishing our dreams. This became even more evident to me when, at the turn of the new year, I looked back on my own goals over the past decade.
Confession: I'm kind of a Disney dork--especially at Christmas. So when my mom told me she'd gotten my sister's family & mine tickets for a joint family trip to Magic Kingdom for Very Merry Christmas this year, I was over-the-top excited!
Daydreams of all the fun memories we'd make with the kids filled my head in the weeks leading up:
excited giggles as the castle came into sight...
playing in the "snow"...
going on our favorite rides...
watching their faces light up while taking in the parade.
But, while those visions eventually came true and the trip ultimately turned out AMAZING, the first hour or two was--for whatever reason--next-level chaotic. When I daydreamed about the trip I didn’t picture my son melting down over the littlest things or people pushing & shoving past each other to make their way into the park. I hadn’t expected that one of the kids would pop a fever as soon as we got there or that the others would fight about things like "his elbow touching my elbow".
I'm Krissy & I'm so thankful you're here. Teacher-Mom life is rewarding but it's tough--we need fuel (& each other) to keep going. I hope this is a place you can go that feels like caffeine for the soul--uplifting & highly addictive ;) Check out the categories below and, if you like what you read, subscribe to make sure you always have good Sunday morning reading to go with your coffee :)