Tuesday, August 09, 2005

The First Day of School

Tomorrow is a big day.

It's the first day of the sixth grade.

So what? I'm 27 (if I remember correctly!) and I will be 28 in a few days. What does the sixth grade have to do with me?

It has everything to do with me. You see, I am going to be the teacher.

MY name will be the name on the door. MY name will be the name written on the board, neatly, in horrible cursive that in no way resembles my own handwriting. MY name will be the name on all the papers that get sent home with the students in the first week.

It's kind of exciting.

It's kind of scary too.

This is the first time that I will be the teacher.

I've been the aide. I've supervised and done playground duty. I've taught lessons when the teacher was working on other things. I've made lesson plans. I've been to college and "taught" lessons to my classmates. I've taught adults.

But sixth graders?

I was in the sixth grade in 1987. We lived for our curling irons, hairspray and lip gloss. The word "virgin" caused fits of giggles, even though that's what we all were and for the most part would be for the next few years. The boys teased the girls and the girls were pretty damn evil to each other.

Can I do this?

I think I can. I am not afraid of being not able to teach. I have no doubt about my abilities there. I have confidence that I am a good speaker and that my classroom management skills are strong as well, because I have practiced them.

On Kindergarteners.

Okay. Maybe I am a little scared. These kids are about my size! Some are even bigger! They're gonna be pubescent and hormonal! They're going to test every boundry I have and they may even find new ones that I didn't know that I had to mess with. What if I have bad breath and they talk about it behind my back? (Yes, I did that) What if they plot hate schemes and make the shy/fat/ugly/poor kid cry? (I'm not proud about it, but I participated in some of those. Sometimes I was the target too.) What if they tape unflattering caricatures of me on the map so that they are revealed when I pull it down? (*sigh* I was bad)

Here's my confession: I have no little piece of paper saying I am certified to teach in this state, because I am not. I don't have one that says I completed this or that coursework, because I haven't finished college yet. So how am I doing this? I am going to be a long-term sub at a charter school! I'm there because the school is having a hard time finding a teacher to hire. The school could find a teacher at any second and then I would be out of a job in an instant. I have no job security as a substutute. Even though the principal and the majority of my co-workers seem to like me, I can't be hired permanently because of that pesky lack of a degree.

Of course, the kids and the parents don't know that I am a sub. They think that I am the teacher, and right now, as far as anyone is concerned, I am. I have the knowledge, the skills, a good portion of the education, the references, and the experience in a classroom that I need to do this. I have more experience in a classroom than some of the teachers in this school! It's just that I guess there is one other thing I am afraid of being... I'm afraid that no matter what, I am a fraud.


Blogger Melissa said...

Wow!!! That is exciting news! I bet you will do amazing!! I wouldn't worry about them thinking you are a fraud. They have been around plenty of teachers to know that substitutes go away. They don't know the difference, I didn't when I was that age. I am so excited for you that you get to do this. YEAH!!! You will have to keep your blog updated to see how it goes. Oh yeah, when is your bday? I remember you posting a while back that it was coming up and you wanted laser hair removal. Anyway, good luck girlie. They will love you

6:33 AM  
Blogger Miss M! said...

Ha ha, I forgot about that! My friend did it instead and loved it, but it was like $800! YIKES! My b-day is the 17th this month... only a week away!

1:46 PM  
Anonymous desiree said...

Oh my gosh! That's great news! I think if the kids and parents like you, they won't care if you're a sub. And you're not the typical sub who just stays for a day or two. You'll get to know the kids and make a difference. Congratulations...and this experience can only help you!

12:59 PM  
Blogger Alana said...

Good luck!

9:48 AM  

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