Friday, June 16, 2017

On Being A Teacher - Reasons 2B Cheerful

I did a lot of learning about self-development this year. Remember the Breakthrough posts I wrote about the course with Devorah Sisso Stieglitz? I still owe you (me?) a post for Breakthrough #6. I got stuck on visualizing a fabulous future for myself - my goals seemed to stop at getting through the week, cleaning the bathroom, and paying the bills. I'm going to work on it again over the holidays. Watch this space.

Meantime, In the interests of gratitude and the laws of attraction - both essential to leading your best life possible, here are my reasons 2B cheerful for this week. The linky is back with Michelle on Mummy from the Heat where a group of us gather to be thankful. It sounds soppy but actually it's vitalizing.

It ends
I was having a moan to a friend last week about how much there is to do at the end of the school and college year. I was writing reports, setting exams, grading exams, end of year parties (mine and DD's), I was given the task of organizing part of the end of year family outing for my school, prepping the summer course, packing up the English room as they need it over the holidays for something else, etc, etc, etc....

My friend sat there patiently while I got it all off my chest and then replied, "yes but in three weeks time it all comes to an end and you have two months off." I got it. I shut up.

Poor but safe
The foundation that pays part of my salary for one of my jobs only pays for 8 out of the 10 months of the school year. So at the end I am paid by the organization that pays the other half of my salary at that particular job. It comes out as much less at the end of the month as they each have different ways of calculating the pay. And, for this particular job, I get almost nothing over the summer. It's annoying but, otoh, I don't work there over the summer. Otoh, teachers still have to live and pay bills for that two-month period.

Last week a friend who had a high-flying position in hi-tech suddenly lost her job when the company reorganized and scrapped her whole department. I went to work that day and thanked God for every irritating thing about my school and for every difficult pupil. I am so lucky to have a job that helps me almost get to the end of the month in the black.

Finishing early
For the final two weeks of the year, the 6th graders who are leaving this year and are busy with their leaving events, get let out of school at 1 pm. So that's a 1 pm finish for me two out of three of my days at school, for the duration.

Patient friend who is regularly in her office till after 6 pm: "What time do you usually finish then?"
Me: 3 pm.
Friend: Oh.
Me. Oh.

I do teach a summer course over the summer but it's mostly online so I can do it at home. Thus, unlike most other parents, I will not be paying a fortune for summer camps and juggling child care with work obligations. If I were to get my full salary over the summer in return for working, it would all go in paying for summer programmes for DD. So in fact, being a teacher is the best thing to be.

I actually enjoy teaching. I like being with my pupils and my students. Staff rooms are usually friendly and supportive places. I have fun. There I've said it.



  1. So good to look for those silver linings and wonderful to have more time with DD over the summer months. Awful you don't get pad for the summer break though, as of course teachers here get paid 12 months of the year regardless of when they are on holiday. Mich x

    1. Teachers here also do if they have a full timetable. I work part time in school and part time in a college where the pay is higher and I do get paid for 12 months. Unfortunately they can't give me a full timetable at the college. And yes, I am so looking forward to the summer break.

  2. Yes I get stuck on daily and weekly goals too, but hopefully you might have a bit more time over the summer to think about your fabulous future - I just hope the weather stays reasonably cool for you xx

    1. That is totally it - I can't get past the weekly or even monthly goals. Forget cool, we're just planning on going out in the evenings instead of during the day.

  3. Good reminders on why we should all be a lot moe thankful at times - thank you.

    Our teachers are well paid (in comparison to many countries) and are off for about 8 to 9 weeks in the summer. Their yearly salary is amortized over 12 months and they get a bit extra at the end of June and again at the start of September - but I know it can be challenging trying to budget things over the summer.
    I have heard from friends how expensive it is for summer programmes/camps and parents are often doing a juggling act to make sure they have coverage - being able to be with DD must be a relief for you.

    1. I'm of an age when not all of my friends' lives are going according to plan and it makes you realize that what you have and what is important. I'm genuinely so thankful for what we have.

  4. Lots of great reasons to be cheerful there... I am trying to make more of an effort to be grateful for the good things and what I have at the moment! :)

    1. Sometimes it take some effort to focus on the things I should be grateful for but it gets easier the more you do it.