When I started my journey toward teaching middle school, I had no idea…
I had no idea how much school has changed since I was in middle school.
I had no idea how much the kids have changed. Each generation thinks that the next is more spoiled, more lazy, more oblivious. I can now vouch that nothing could be further from the truth.
I had no idea how much the curriculum has changed or what “standardized” really means.
I had no idea that I would teach socio-emotional content (ie: skills for being a happy and functional person) in addition to English– and how much I would enjoy that (although, hey, let’s fund and prioritize actual school counselors/therapists/social workers, everybody)
I had no idea that you can no longer pop in a VHS of Bill Nye and have 20 minutes of “downtime.”
I had no idea that the biggest challenge would be learning to control my own emotions.
I had no idea that my kids would constantly be on my mind. Evenings, weekends, holidays– I’m always trying to be better for them.
I had no idea how much it would break my heart, and I had no idea how much it would warm my heart.
I had no idea how much my colleagues would push me to think outside my comfort zone.
I had no idea how much I would love being around middle schoolers. Yes, they are moody. Yes, they are hormonal. Yes, they are dramatic. But they are also goofy. They are curious. They are funny. And they think I’m funny (sometimes).