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GRADUATION BRAGS AND APPRECIATION RANTS

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t’s Friday December 21st at 1:30pm. My column is due by 4:00pm. I am sat here, reeling with annoyance, because I had completed my column on Tuesday. But then I come in to work today to find that there have been some technology issues and I cannot access anything I wrote. Which means my tidbits, which I poured all my hard work into on Tuesday is gone. Vanished. Never to be seen again. Unfortunately, this means I have to rewrite the whole thing. Fortunately, I can remember the basics of what I wrote so rewriting it shouldn’t take long. I hope. So, on Sunday December 16th, I celebrated my graduation from my Master’s In Early Childhood Education Program. The fact that I was in this program shouldn’t come as a surprise because I have spoken about it various times, in tidbits, over the past two years. However, if you are new to reading this column then first of all – welcome ☺ I’m glad to have you here. And second of all – for the past two years I have been earning my Master’s Degree in Early Childhood Education. I just graduated from that program on Sunday December 16th. Awesome, now we’re all on the same page. You’ll have to excuse me because this column is going to contain a lot of boasting. Now I’m normally not the type of person to brag about my achievements. Like sure, I’ll tell people that “hey I got a Master’s” or “I didn’t get any grade less than an ‘A’ for the entire two year period.” But I won’t go on and on and on about it. I’ll be proud of myself internally, but I won’t shout it from the rooftops. But this time it’s different, because this time I want to shout my accomplishments from the rooftop. Because I am extremely proud of myself. Now I know that there are some people in my life who may think I chose an easy path when I decided to go into education. They don’t actually say it, but I come from a family of doctors and engineers, so for me to think that there may be a couple of members who are probably thinking “oh she studied education, that’s got to be easy” isn’t very far-fetched. But they would be wrong. Education and being a teacher is the farthest thing from easy. But let me just say that the majority of the people in my life have been very encouraging and supportive. Most particularly my parents and sister, so shout-out to them for being the best. I’m lucky to have them. I’ve written about this in the past, but the amount of hard work I had to over the past two years was more than even I expected. I won’t bore you with the details of all the projects, papers and assignments I had to do but let’s just say I barely had a minute to breathe. I mean that’s not an exaggeration. I would work on an assignment for a few days and then immediately have to start on the next one. Sometimes I’d be working on multiple assignments at one time. And when I was sleeping I’d be thinking about everything I had to complete. I literally lived for the breaks I would get in December and May where the only thing I had to do was go to work. Yeah, coming to work felt like a holiday to me. Now you’re probably thinking ‘what’s wrong with this girl? Loads of people go to graduate school and have to deal with hard work. Loads of people do that with a full time job. Loads of people have assignments that they spend the whole day doing. Loads of people get daily headaches from stress. You’re not special Trishna, get over yourself.’ And honestly, I agree. In fact, I had it easy because my only responsibilities right now are my education and career. I wasn’t doing all of this with the added factor of having to run a household and take care of my own kids like so many of my classmates did. But that isn’t really the focal consideration point. The point I’m trying to get forth is the fact that education isn’t an easy degree and teaching is not an easy job. And I’m trying to get that point across by discussing the amount of effort and work that went into my classes. Hey, it makes sense to me. But honestly I don’t understand why teachers and the career of teaching isn’t more respected. I mean even before I considered doing my Master’s, I already thought that teachers were underappreciated and underpaid. Actually don’t even get me started on underpaid. Like I understand paying doctors more than teachers because they save lives. But there are some careers that get paid more than teachers and I just don’t get how. Honestly, I could write an entire column on this topic. But as I was saying, I don’t think anyone can truly understand what goes into being a teacher until they’ve tried it. I mean I haven’t been in a classroom by myself yet but I have completed various field observations and a four month internship where I have basically got the gist of it and, through leading activities, have gotten to see what being a teacher consists of. A teacher’s job doesn’t just consist of going to school for eight hours and then coming home. Teachers normally get to school a couple of hours before start-time or stay after end-time to organize their classroom, lesson plan and get materials ready for the next day. Teachers spend their weekends and holidays grading papers and preparing for the next week or next teaching period. Teachers, not only have to teach lessons, but also have to deal with behavioral issues and maintaining attention at the same time. And yeah the three months off during summer is a perk, but teachers normally aren’t paid in the summer months so they have to take up a second job during that time. So it’s not really time-off in that sense. And with all of this, teachers have to deal with comments like “oh you’re a teacher that must be easy.” I mean honestly I wish everyone could experience being a teacher for just a day because after that I feel that it would be more appreciated. I mean I’m writing about it and I don’t think I’m doing it justice. At the least, these points I made are just a short list. But you know what? I am so happy with my career choice. Despite the hard-work I am very happy. And at the end of the day, that’s what matters most. Because I would rather be happy in my career than make lots of money. And as much as I wish teachers were more universally appreciated, it helps to know that there are people out there who do appreciate us and show that appreciation in different ways. And nothing will stop me from being the best teacher I can possibly be. To end, I’d just like to take a minute to shout-out all the teachers that read this column. Thank you for your efforts, guidance and kindness. Thank you for being there for the kids. Thank you for everything you do. I appreciated you before I embarked on this journey and I appreciate you even more now. It’s Friday December 21st at 2:30pm. I’m finished with my column. I’m going to take a nap. Goodnight everyone. PS: I’ll be taking a break next week but you’ll probably get another tidbits in two weeks. Hope you all had a Merry Christmas and have a Happy New Year!

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