Wednesday, March 25, 2009

An open letter to my job

Dear Teaching,

I really like you. You are interesting, you change constantly, you are an ongoing challenge. You make me laugh out loud at least once every day. All the things that made me hate previous jobs are absent in you. (For example, I do not at this time have a Psychotic Absentee Boss. It's a relief, is what.) I like my students, I like my colleagues, I like my classroom better now that I've changed things up a bit, I like every single thing.

Except for one.

It's the marking, my dear. I know that I'm the one who planned all these lessons, I'm the one who stood at the front of the class and explained everything, I'm the one who answered the stupid questions ("can we start now?" is my favourite), I'm the one who supervised the work and set the deadline and clarified expectations and came up with the Assessment Criteria (a fancy thing they teach you to say in Teacher's School that really means You Have to Give the Teacher What She Wants and Here's the List). I'm the one who changed the due date and provided support and encouragement and guidance and paper, not to mention scissors and glue sticks and bandaids (don't ask). I collected all the work and schlepped it home with me and stacked it on my kitchen table because the office still isn't organized the way I want it to be.

And NOW, now you expect me to give an hour or two or three of my day, my vacation, dear heart, to marking this stuff.

Well, it rankles a bit.

Because I feel like I've chewed on this same crap for weeks now, and I'm expected to sit down to it again, every single freaking day, as if it were some bowl of hot steaming deliciousness I had never known before.

But I will do it. I will, because it is just one small thing that bugs me in the whole loveliness that is the Noble Profession of Teachering, and because I am up for the challenge, and because I want to be good at this, and because I like my house and if I want to keep living here I have to give the bank a bunch of money, which is best acquired through this thing called "having a job". Marking is a small irritation the way a blister inside your shoe is small: it looks tiny and insignificant but it makes you want to eat a big bowl of gravel and hair just to relieve your frustration, your pain, your inability to escape without gnawing off a limb.

I just wanted you to know how I'm feeling, because I know you value my insights into our relationship.

And no, I didn't take a freaking picture.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Blue Willow makes me happy too, I started collecting it for myself a long time ago. Good for you!