Let’s Be Honest

6 Feb

School is a complete joke.  I mean, who am I to say anything… I’m a third year soon to be teacher… and I feel burnt out already.  I am so completely frustrated I honestly don’t know where to go anymore.  I am sick of going to education classes and learning about how to be a teacher.  It’s not because I don’t think the education classes have anything to offer, I’m far from thinking I’m smarter than the education program, I am quite the opposite.  I feel like I’m never going to be good enough.  We only have one life to live, and there isn’t enough time to make the difference that I want to.  There is absolutely so much wrong with education I am never going to be able to make a difference.

It’s sad that what I’m aspiring to do seems so useless.  Our system is filled with people who just don’t seem to care and I feel like I’m drowning.  Education is so incredibly important and it’s not taken serious enough.  Education is NOT about going to university, or driving the economy, or even just getting a job.  Education is safety, it’s a livelihood, it means giving people the skills to be able to live.  Getting a job is so important, but it’s so much more than that.

What is the point of school?  I feel like being in secondary education is the easy way out.  Who cares about high school.  Yes, I can see the importance of things, but really by the time kids get to high school they are going to know if education is important to them or not.  Yes, there will be lots of time to make a difference in high school, I’m not saying there won’t be.  I just feel like being in the secondary math program is so shallow.  I obviously feel like math is important, I’m in math education, but in the entire scheme of things what the fuck is math.  Why am I wasting my time learning to be a secondary math teacher when the crucial times are in middle years.  No one seems to want to teach middle years and it is by far the most important time.  The kids who are taking secondary math are the ones who basically already know where they are going with in life, what about the kids who fell behind.

Who the hell is a teacher anyways.  Teachers can make a huge difference and the people who are in my department seem to take that for granted.  Who cares if you can make an engaging lesson plan, and if you know the curriculum inside and out.  Is that the skill set we are aspiring to have?  We can think we know everything about teaching and then you get thrown in an inner city school and you find out you really know absolutely nothing.  Or you have kids in your class with disabilities and again, nothing.  Or the kid in the back who gets abused at home, how am I going to help that person.  My best friend is in social work, would I be able to do more if that was what I did?  When it comes down to it, the kids you really actually need to help probably aren’t going to be able to be helped in a school.  The school can make a difference but how much?

I don’t want it to seem like I think school is not important, I think that school how it is now is completely wrong.  Focus is on the wrong things and we are depriving youth of the things they need.  Our society is quite advanced, and we need to be educated in order to run things, but at the end of the day it’s more imporant if everyone has a home to go to.  What good is an advanced society when there are children who sleep on the street?  School needs to foster the ability of people to make decisions for themselves and make sure that those decisions are well thought through.  We need to teach students how to think.  To quote my math ed teacher “Math is the vehicle to develop the mind”.

I never am going to feel like I’m going to be a good enough teacher, and that is a good thing.  I am perfectly prepared to devote my entire life to getting better because I will never know absolutely everything.  There is always going to be experiences that shock me so I need to, instead of preparing myself for specific things, prepare myself to be shocked.  It’s disheartening too, knowing that I am going to be in a constant battle for the rest of my life.  I’m scared every day that I will burn myself out too quick and not actually get shit done.  That’s all I want to do, get shit done.  I want to be a shit disturber, I want to change things, but am I the kind of person people actually want to have in their school?  What if what I think needs to change is wrong, who am I to argue with people who have been teaching forever.  Do I have any right thinking everything needs to change when, experience wise, I know nothing.

When I compare myself to my peers I have mixed opinions of what I actually know.  Sometimes I feel like I’m above them because I think like this and think that one day I can actually make a change for the better.  Other days I feel eons behind them because they seem so confident and secure with their abilities to teach.  Why is it that, aside from a select few of my peers, only I feel like we are heading down the wrong path?  Some people I go to school with think that University is a joke because we need to actually just be in schools and teaching to learn.  I agree with that to a point, because once we get into schools that’s when everything is going to get real.  I also think that we need to learn everything we can from the people who have devoted their life to education.  I aspire to be a teacher that is good enough that I can teach people how to teach, and I feel like everyone else just wants to do the bare minimum.  I want to go above and beyond but how can I do that?

Maybe I want to do to much.  I constantly aspire to do things that are beyond my ability.  Is that a bad or good thing?  Maybe I need to focus on the things that I am actually able to do, and do them well, instead of trying to do something I will never be able to do.  Maybe I’m just scared.  I don’t even need to say maybe, I am absolutely 100% scared.  I’m terrified of going into a school and wrecking someones life.  There is a huge responsibility on me and I need to know that I’m on the right track.  You learn from the mistakes you make, I believe that, so making the mistakes, I hope,  is a healthy thing.

Instead of being scared and ranting to my friends and my blog I need to just man up and do something.  I have to stop being scared and be more confident, I just don’t know how to do that.  Instead of being worried about the things that I won’t be able to do I should focus on things that I will be able to do.

Never let the fear of striking out keep you from playing the game.

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3 Responses to “Let’s Be Honest”

  1. Michael Kaechele February 6, 2011 at 8:16 pm #

    Wish I could tell you it will all make sense and come out perfect some day, but it won’t. Any teacher who cares about their craft continues to have struggles and doubts at times. We don’t always know the difference we make even when we do make one.

    Students and teachers are humans-complex organisms. There is no magic way of solving the problems of every child. Teaching is about relationships and those have their up and downs too.

    I think your transparency speaks loudly about your heart. You can and will make a difference if you follow it and share it with your students. It is ok to have doubts-you will probably have many more when you get your own class. The important thing is to value your students and serve them and you will be successfu.

  2. Cassie February 6, 2011 at 11:12 pm #

    “My best friend is in social work, would I be able to do more if that was what I did? When it comes down to it, the kids you really actually need to help probably aren’t going to be able to be helped in a school. The school can make a difference but how much?”

    Kids that ‘really actually need help’ will benefit from any support they get. What kind of difference would a school or teachers make if everyone that felt this way went into social work? The differences you make will depend on the relationships you choose to create, whatever the profession you choose.

    Also: anyone who is completely confident, anyone that is NOT SCARED at this point in our education blows my mind.

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  1. Tweets that mention Let’s Be Honest « Samantha's Blog -- Topsy.com - February 6, 2011

    […] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Michael Kaechele, samantha douglas. samantha douglas said: blogged out some frustrations, would love some feedback http://wp.me/pjNZH-5p #education #edchat […]

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