This is a video I made for my cohort. Feel free to use it with new teacher inductions, teacher graduations, or any other thing that honors teacehrs.
25 Things to Know About Teaching
Congratulations. You are about to enter one of the most noble professions in the world. Here are 25 things you should know about ahead of time:
That’s right. Twenty-five.
1. During the first week of school, your feet are going to hurt.
2. You will rediscover the joy of simple things, like smelly markers.
3. You will have teacher nightmares the month before you start teaching. It’s totally normal. We all get them.
4. But some of those nightmares will become a reality. Because you’re going to fail. Hard. But each mistake is another iteration closer to success. So, keep experimenting.
5. You will learn to hold your bladder for hours on end. If this were an Olympic sport, teachers would be gold medalists.
6. You will cry in your car. Or at your desk. Or maybe even both.
7. You’re going to put on weight. It’s like the freshman fifteen, except it might be 20 or 25.
8. You will yell at your class. You will apologize. And your students will amaze you when they forgive you on the spot.
9. But here’s the thing. You’re going to have amazing lessons and you’ll shock yourself with how awesome you are when you bring your A game.
10. You will leave your lunch at home and eat it from the vending machine. You’ll convince yourself that Cheez-Its and Cheetohs are a full portion of dairy.
11. You’re going to start carrying around hand sanitizer everywhere. Or, as the kids call it, “Hanitizer”
12. From this year forward, you are going to be stuck watching the same Bloodborne Pathogen video year after year after year. Welcome to the club.
13. You’re going to fall asleep at 5:00 in the evening with a half-empty carton of Ben and Jerry’s and a massive pile of papers.
14. You’re going to try to do too much and try too hard and that’s okay. Just give yourself permission to rest. Watch a movie. Read a book. Go out into nature. Take care of your health.
15. Your students are going to amaze you with their work and their ideas and their growth
16. You’ll feel like the luckiest person alive. And you are. But here’s the thing. So are your students.
17. You will worry about your students. You will have a student whose story breaks your heart and you will think about that child every day when you go home.
18. Then you will go back and you will listen to that child and affirm that child and teach that child and love that child even when they are difficult. Because you are a teacher and that’s what we do.
19. Someday the kids in your class will come back and invite you to their college graduation and hand you a thank you note and you’ll cry in your car just like you did in the first year of teaching.
20. Even on your worst days, you are going to think critically and promote justice and transform the teaching practice.
21. You will inspire students to be better people and
22. empower them to be deeper thinkers.
23. They will feel safe and loved and challenged.
24. They will be the makers who build a better future.
25. And the world will be better place. Because of you.