Saturday, February 14, 2009

“I’m Not Going To Throw You the Life Jacket”

I can’t even imagine having a student teacher…the stress of watching him or her screw up time and time again and only hope that they get it right at some point. The strength to sit in the back of the class and hold back while a student teacher is going down the wrong path or letting the class be too disruptive. The amount of paper work to fill out, the very little pay, and to deal with a high stress situation – teaching someone else how to do what you do well: Teach. Well that and change that world.

That’s when last week it hit me though, Anne told me that she “was not going to throw the life jacket.” I had gotten into a little bit of a situation with my classroom management, you can read about it in other posts, but that she was not going to save me. She desperately wanted to, and I could see it in how she talked to me, but against everything she wanted to do – she is not going to. I would not learn anything if she came in, fixed the situation, and then handed the class back to me.

It was just a weird sense of isolation, recognition, and finally acknowledgment. She’s there to support me, both of my cooperating teachers are, but it is not their job to step in and save me. It’s mine. It’s my responsibility to fix, change, alter, and improve the education of the students in my classes.

In all reality, I don’t want to be saved, because I want swim. Although, the only way I learn how to swim is to sink a little at first. So thank you Anne and Kristin for holding onto the life jacket and letting me flounder, as hard as I know it is, because I am confident with your support and instruction that one day I will swim and swim well.