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View Diary: Teach With Your Heart (65 comments)

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  •  Ugh, this hit me in the gut (2+ / 0-)
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    RieRie, miss SPED

    I am a drop out teacher.

    I taught one year of high school.

    I was assigned, as a first-year teacher:

    Three classes of freshman English (two classes were "lower achievement level")

    One class of Practical English (which was a fancy name for "here, keep these juniors from killing themselves and each other for an hour -- we think they're so stupid we're not even going to give you a curriculum for this class; make something up")

    One class of seniors who needed an English credit. This was not AP English or College Prep English. This was another throw-away English class for which no curriculum was available. Most of these kids had failed every English class they'd taken in high school.

    And, blessedly, Creative Writing, the highlight of my day.

    On top of this, because of space issues, I had no classroom. I borrowed classrooms from other teachers during their plan time. My desk was in the teacher's lounge. I spent my plan time listening to all the other teachers grouse, interrupted constantly, unable to hear myself think.

    I had no mentor even though our state required a structured mentoring program for first-year teachers, no support system. This school district chewed through first-year teachers like a whale through krill. "First-year teacher" was a four letter word.

    And I was paid $22,500 a year.

    I came in with the best intentions. I yearned to open my heart and teach with my authentic self, to connect with my students and encourage them to succeed.

    I failed. Miserably. It is the biggest regret of my life.

    Sometimes I still wake up in a cold sweat after dreaming I am back in the classroom.

    I'm not sure what the point of my comment is, other than to say I recognize what I longed for my teaching experience to be in your diary. I wish this had been my reality; perhaps I would still be teaching today.

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