Every year about this time a different person moves into our house. She’s a bit more serious and a great deal more intense than the person who lives here during the summer. When school is about to begin a carefree, fun-loving person is replaced by someone with intensity and dedication.
My wife, Tammy, is a teacher. There is a transition in her personality every year at this time. If there is a teacher in your household, you know exactly what I’m talking about. Fridays become holidays. Summers are savored. Christmas break is a fantastic Christmas gift.
Those who don’t have educators in their homes have no idea. In fact, I wonder just how much of the public realizes and understands the amount of work, preparation, time, effort, care, and concern that goes into teaching a class — grade school, high school, or college.
I know it’s popular to say that teachers have it easy because they get holidays and summers off. But I can tell you from first hand knowledge that they more than make up for those hours during the school year. Evenings, weekends, and free time that other people take for granted are all used by teachers to get their “take home” work finished.
If a teacher has never taught a class or grade level before, you can simply double the work about which I just wrote. Sure, it gets easier the longer you teach a class or subject. But there is always work. Every day. School year weekends. All the way through to the last day of school.
You think children are happy when school’s over? Ask a teacher how they feel about summer vacation. It’s not because they don’t enjoy teaching. It’s just that they need a break.
You’ve seen the bumper sticker: If you can read this, thank a teacher. The teacher’s family deserves some thanks, too, for the sacrifices they make at the expense of grading papers, planning classes, and going to bed early.
So, if you see a teacher today as another school year begins, thank her (or him). You might also think about thanking that teacher’s husband and family.
What’s a memory of your favorite teacher?