la dolce vita

random thoughts from a married, twenty-something trying to live the good life

Sunday, August 14, 2005

a gentle reminder

Yesterday, I was out and about with the husband and was approached by a girl who asked my husband where he worked and what he did. He works for a big airline, doing nerdy training videos and corporate communication videos and such. The girl seemed extremely interested. Then she turned to me and asked the same thing, to which I said 'I just finished my master's degree and will be teaching 6th grade math.' Then, do you know what this girl did? She says 'Oh.' and somewhat rudely turns to begin a conversation with someone else, because clearly, teaching is just not interesting enough. I was snubbed! For being a teacher!

I've heard more than my share of comments on the teaching profession lately....'teachers don't work during the summer', 'those who can do, those who can't teach', 'teaching is such an easy job', 'teachers only have to work 180 days a year', etc., etc., etc.

Maybe we don't officially have to work at school for the entire year, but, I guarantee that we are working on evenings, and weekends, and those so called 'summers-off' (at least the teachers that really care about their profession and their students are). Teaching is not just one job - you have to teach, you have to be a role model, you have to be their mentor, their encourager, someone that can diagnose a health concern on the spot, the parental figure in some instances where there may not be one at home, their counselor, and so much more.

What is my point with all of this? My point is this, each of us has chosen our professions because of a teacher, and maybe not a teacher in the formal sense of the word, but perhaps someone that has 'teacher characteristics' and guided you on your way. Without these teachers, we might not be where we are today.

So, for the girl that clearly snubbed me, and those people that think that teaching is some joke of a profession where you only work 180 days a year, I'm sorry you feel that way, but there is no reason for you to belittle the teaching profession, or teachers, because our jobs are just as valuable as anyone elses.


At Sun Aug 14, 07:06:00 PM, Anonymous Janet said...

And it's not like we are paid generously when we are off for the summer, when we are grading papers at home, when we are lesson planning over Christmas break, etc. I don't know about where you are, but we don't get paychecks for July or August.


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