Day 14: A Slice of Life

15 Days of Back To School

The Slice of Life Story Challenge is hosted at Two Writing Teachers

Today was the first day the students were actually “back to school.”  Ok, I didn’t quite make my 15 days before the first day….hey, I tried.  It was a good day.  An exhausting day, but a good day.  Let’s zoom in.

11:20: I’ve been teaching like my hair is on fire since 9:00 am.  Routines and read alouds, putting away supplies, collecting forms and money, the list goes on and on.  I drop the students at art, rush to the restroom, and then flop in a chair in my classroom.  It’s the first time I’ve sat down since 8:30 this morning.  My brain can only think of one thing….coffee.  I start imagining what it would be like for an iced coffee to arrive at my door.  Little beads of dew sliding down the slick edges of the plastic cup.  The perfect dark ebony color just slightly tinged with a hint of creamy milk.  A straw beckoning to me…drink me…drink me…

The media seems to be doing a lot of teacher bashing lately.  But they don’t realize that teachers really aren’t the selfish fat cats they make us out to be.  (Come on I only take my Hummer limo to school a few times a week.)  This is a HARD JOB.  So much so that I would have sold my soul for an iced coffee at 11:20 am this morning.  You see sending a student to the Starbucks and passing it off as a math lesson is frowned upon.

It made me think of the little things.  (Most of them food related.)  The dad who bought us breakfast at music fest last year.  The Shamrock Shake one of my students handed me after a hard day.  The stack of cards in my bottom desk drawer that say things like, “You’re best techer.”  Yes, that’s how it was spelled and yes I had one more lesson for that student before they left my care.

So today, on my first day, I am thankful for the small things. I’m no longer going to listen to the news about lazy teachers or overpaid teachers.  Because I know the truth.  We put our blood, sweat, and tears….literally…into this job every day.  No really, I stabbed myself with a sharpie this morning.  We also don’t get coffee breaks, pee breaks, or lunch breaks most days.  We do everything from patching up boo boos to fixing copy machines MacGyver style with a toothpick and a junior mint.  Oh, and we teach.

We teach.

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11 Responses to Day 14: A Slice of Life

  1. Michelle says:

    Love this! You are so right! I was ‘sucked’ in when you were dreaming about that iced coffee and straw screaming to you! And, I had to laugh: “We do everything from patching up boo boos to fixing copy machines MacGyver style with a toothpick and a junior mint. Oh, and we teach.” Thanks for this heavenly slice of a teacher’s life!

  2. blkdrama says:

    This sounds like inspiration. In Finland you would get the respect you deserve :) and probably coffee.

  3. elsie says:

    Teaching is a hard job and not everyone is able to do it with the love and conviction you have put forth in this post. Your kids are lucky they landed in your class. I hope you will get the iced coffee you deserve.

  4. Tara says:

    I wish I could have bought you that 11:20 ice coffee…but I was running around my building trying to find someone to fix the leak in my classroom ceiling, the one right over the writing center I’d labored to put together. Teaching (especially these days) is hard work, Katie…but how many people get to collect notes like “You’re best techer” (your stack) or “You rock pretty much every day” (mine)??!! I hope you treated yourself to a bubble bath and an early bed time, my friend. You earned it!

  5. Deb Day says:

    I too would have brought you that iced coffee, but I was in the middle of working with alternative school students and then running back to the high school to teach my 5th hour class. Those teacher bashers just don’t get it, do they. Have a great year!

  6. Linda Baie says:

    It’s a marvelous tribute to all teachers, & you wrote it so beautifully, right down to the ‘sharp’ sharpie. I too would have brought that coffee. Perhaps I’ll remember that when the teachers at school are having such a big, challenging day to take their orders. Hope the rest of the week brings you a comfy chair, a coffee and a sweet note.

  7. This is such an honest uplifting post! I really needed to hear this today. I can hear your voice in your writing. And your beginning really had that “first day” feeling. And I agree with you about not focusing on the teacher bashing. Have a great first week!

  8. TGH says:

    I can’t help but grin! Pure honesty. It sure helps to have someone else express the feelings I want to SHOUT sometimes! Off to the shower to get ready for my school day. Teacher bashers are truly uneducated about what is happening in the classroom. Hang in there. The rewards are fleeting but sweet!

  9. Nora says:

    Great post! Instead of coffee, I was doing the same thing with a can of coke..a cold, refreshing drink. What I would have given!

  10. Katie says:

    Thanks for the supportive comments! I knew there were other coffee “yearners” out there.

  11. Stacey says:

    It’s funny how you thought of coffee when you sat down. It’s fuel, isn’t it. I often wish coffee would just arrive at my door when I needed it (like this morning).
    Hope your week with the kiddos went well!

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