I was talking to a fellow teacher during breakfast duty today and said, "When I was a junior or senior in college, I never thought my job would be like this." Now, realize I said this with a broad smile. I was smiling because my job is never boring, and I bet yours isn't either. But think about all of the things we try to teach theses kids. It's incredible.
Earlier this year I realized I may be a music teacher, but my (our) job is to create successful humans. So, here's what that looked like at my school today.
We were doing breakfast duty and a group of boys had trashed a table. My aforementioned teacher reminded them they needed to make sure they picked up everything. Let's just say they didn't. So, she went down the hall and rounded up all of the boys and said, "Did you not hear the conversation where I asked that you picked up your mess?" She was not mean. She did not yell. She just reminded them that the adults at our school will make sure they are responsible. She reminded them that we want them to be successful humans.
Next story. We have a sixth grader who has a lot of problems. He loves band and today is the Parade of Bands concert. So, he came to school dressed up. Well, sorta. He was wearing a pair of black jeans that ended at his ankles, a white polo, and a plaid oxford. Under the collar of the polo he had a striped tie, and, as I walked up, he was trying to button the oxford over the polo. One of the sixth grade teachers called over to me saying, "Mr. Barner, (student name) needs a little help with his tie." So, I helped him a bit and moved on. I came out of the team room and saw the boy back in the hallway with his teacher. His teacher is great. Patient. Even. He had convinced the student to go to the bathroom, and just wear the oxford. He then gave him one on one time to make sure that the tie was straight and not too tight. I have great respect for this man, but in watching him take the time to help this student with his tie, I realized again, what our job is.
So, remember: our students will disappoint us. They will not follow through. We may be "just" be teachers, but our job is to create successful humans. Make sure to do your job today.
Your comments are welcomed and encouraged,