With the reduced load that Teach for Australia graduates have been afforded, I have managed to get a timetable with some interesting features. The first is a big win: Thursdays are classtime free – a great opportunity to get catch up with where I thought I should have been with preparation, and to catch some breath. The downside of this quirky timetable is that my Friday’s are 5-on or 6-on depending on which week it is. Exciting times.
Already I’ve been looking for a Ctrl-Z on a few of my classrooms – or perhaps just a Ctrl-N so I could start again. But the fact of the matter is that this job is well suited for me: it stretches me in areas I’ve sometimes been able to sneak through in the past (I’m dreading the day that I have to wing a class on no preparation), but it also suits some of my strengths. I shared an encouraging story of one of my kids with learning difficulties being desperate to show me the (theory based) homework he’d done, and my friend replied that “if there’s anyone who can take every last ounce of encouragement out of a story like that, it’s you”. While I’m sure that was meant to be insulting in some way – the truth is that I think it does speak to part of why really do think I’m made to teach. I’m never going to be satisfied with only seeing that spark in a few students: but there’s no way in hell it’s not going to encourage me.