Thursday, May 5, 2011

Bittersweet Symphony

There is nothing like returning to a place that remains unchanged to find the ways in which you yourself have altered. ---Nelson Mandela

So, here I am. It is my last day of student teaching. Last block of the day, my cooperating teacher taking back over. It still hasn't quite hit me that tomorrow, I don't have to get up at 6AM and be somewhere. I won't have papers to grade, or lessons to plan; my Capstone project is complete. Each student got a letter from me, and I got a few from them.

The most striking moment for me today was that there was a line of students wanting to hug me after my most challenging class. I couldn't believe how, because it was my last day, they came to realize how much work I had done for them. Teaching is not a job for people expecting gratitude, but I was overwhelmed with their gratitude and my own.

Upon reflecting about the semester, at first I didn't think I had changed, but I have begun to realize that I have, even from just a few weeks ago. It's been an interesting ride, but to have the challenges that I have had are the reason why I feel so prepared for what I am about to tell you, reader.

I have a job :) I will be teaching junior high English and Literature. I am so fortunate, so very blessed. I've had it for a few weeks now, but wrapping up the term and finishing everything for college AND moving has consumed me. I have summer vacation starting tomorrow, graduation on Saturday, and then... I go to see my classroom/sign contracts on Monday. But I guess summer starts pretty quick here. I think the first month and a half will be devoted to reading every book I can get my grubby little hands on and doing things that I haven't had the opportunity to do in a long time. This includes a full night's rest.

I am planning to continue the blogging, especially because student teaching was just the beginning. Veni, Vidi, Vici