Alrighty now, I just was reading http://californiateacherguy.blogspot.com/ about his trials of his new job, and I got to thinking about all the lessons I’ve learned from teaching.
See that map? See Fresno? See waaaaaaay up in the mountains? See the red line? That’s Dunlap Road, and way back in there is the site of my first teaching job. My boss was the Fire Chief, and his brother owned the bar. Just that alone should tell you what kind of a town it was.
What did I learn:
Turkey farms produce so much stench that you can actually have a Turkey Day, like a Rainy Day, when all kids must go inside in order not to puke.
That sometimes, great teachers turn into bored teachers who sit and read the paper during class, and they don’t care if you (the newbie) see it.
That you can do a full play of The Headless Horseman and can actually include every kid.
That even when there are rumors about two teachers, you should never ever pass them along, or believe them.
That, even in 1981 you could still smoke in the Teacher’s Lounge, but you couldn’t flush the toilets if there was a snow day.
And thus ends the Dunlap lesson. CTG reminded me of this one kid. On the last day, after all the busses were ready to go, there was a knock at the teacher’s lounge door. We were all lamenting the end of the year, etc. This boy Scott was waiting for me outside. When I walked out, he started crying and hugged me so hard I thought I would break.
Yeah, that’s teaching. You never know who’s heart you’re gonna touch. That was 26 classes ago. He is probably 39 by now. And I miss him. I love that moment… when what happens between teacher and student is both blessed and powerful. You could blink and miss it, but don’t.