Friday, October 22, 2010

Sounding Board




Sounding Board

I fell asleep in the lobby of the Bethesda Marriott this morning.

No, I wasn't a hotel guest who'd been turned out of her room. I was grading papers while waiting on Ella Numera Una, who spent the a.m. interviewing at a local jobs fair.

A comfy combination of sun streaming in through a large lobby window, the droning of CNN on a nearby plasma, the snug recesses of an overstuffed chair and a sizeable pile of AP Lang essays lulled me into a mid-morning nap.

Not to complain, but one of the reasons I've posted so irregularly this fall is because of my workload. The truth about teaching is that it's not a nine-to-five job. Can't get up and leave in the middle of a kiddo's question; can't leave the stresses of the workplace at the workplace.

The job follows me, 24/7. I'm either thinking about a lesson, planning a lesson, grading a pile of student papers or cogitating an assignment that will, most certainly, lead to more papers, more grading.

Yes, I have some colleagues who are fine with the relaxing pace of arriving at 7:30 and departing shortly after 2 p.m, or thereabouts. They screen films for their students; they assign few papers; they never stress at all. In fact, one of our teachers showed a World Cup match for his 10th-graders last spring, in lieu of giving a final exam.

Unfortunately ~ for me, at least ~ I'm not one of those profesoras. I firmly believe that a cherub can't properly matriculate without a little deep brain stimulation, of the old-fashioned kind.

So, I guess as long I'm still in the game, I'll keep up the complaint. And catch some shut-eye when I can.

Editor's Note: The serene sight posted above features the sun sinking into North Carolina's Currituck Sound. I visited The OBX a couple of weeks ago, to re-charge the old batteries. What a sensationally serene place!

28 comments:

jeff campbell said...

Such a lovely scene...great composition...Peace

Stephanie Faris said...

I think every job can be either super-stressful or laid-back, depending on the person who has it. In other words, if you really care about your work and demand more out of yourself than the average person, it WILL be stressful because you care. I'm a state employee and all around me I see people who just don't give a darn because our raises aren't based on our performance. I'm not that way at all. I care TOO much...and it really gets me nowhere, in the end!

Sylvia K said...

It is such a beautiful scene indeed and I, too, love your composition! I also relate to what you wrote about teaching as I did that in my earlier life and I ran into the same situations/feelings regarding my students and just what my job entailed! Enjoy your weekend!

Sylvia

June Freaking Cleaver said...

The Boy needs a teacher or two like you...instead, he has the baseball coach - who has a degree in general studies.

But he's taking classes now - so they tell me that that does help.

Jeanie said...

You are the teacher we all want our kids to have. My guess is that language essays, even AP, could be sleep inducing.

Carol said...

Your photo is gorgeous. What a beautiful scene. I never realized how much teachers do until my daughter became a teacher. She's working all the time!

Tara R. said...

I'm sure your cherubs appreciate how dedicated you are to their education, and they are all the better for it too.

Lovely OBX sunset.

Sarah said...

As long as you don't drool you have my permission to nap any time you want.

Christy said...

i keep falling asleep over my papers. sigh. i wish the grading fairy would come by to see me!

quilly said...

Love that pink sunset! Wow!

One of the reasons I am on this hiatus from teaching is because after 10 years in a high risk school, I needed to de-stress. Worries over my students followed me every where -- and there are still some, long beyond my reach, I still worry about and pray for. I didn't teach curriculum, I taught children each an individual in his or her own right.

Betty Manousos @ CUT AND DRY said...

Love, love this photo Melissa.
Lovely sight!!

I'm always falling asleep during the day as there's always lack of sleep.

Hope you have a relaxing weekend!

B xx

Julie M. said...

I've actually stayed at that hotel multiple times before (Scott's parent's live in Silver Spring).

A mid morning nap sounds like heaven right about now. I can only imagine how teaching is a non-stop job. You sound like you're doing great work; your students are lucky to have you!

Jenn @ Youknow...that Blog? said...

I SO wish you were the Teen's teacher. So many times I hear about them watching a movie or being told they can leave by a sub (which seems to happen all the time!) because the sub didn't know what else to do with them. Not good!

Hope you enjoyed your nap! Sounds like just what the doctor ordered.

Jen said...

I wish all teachers were as dedicated.

Tracy P. said...

Bless you for that!

Vodka Logic said...

I love the picture. the beach is a favorite place of mine.

As for sleep, I can sleep anywhere since I work nights.

Nice to know a dedicated teacher..too many get a bad rap these days

EG Wow said...

The colour of the setting sun is so rosy pink!

Allyson said...

I would like to say that of all of my teachers, the ones I still thank to this very day are the ones who challenged me. I do not go running up to my World Civ teacher (who coached baseball and currently attends my mom's church) and thank him fervently for showing UK basketball games during class. I thank the English teacher who assigned a crap-ton of books and essays. I firmly believe that the more a person reads and writes, the better educated they become...even if not in the classroom. And those English and Literature teachers have continued to educate me, even though I've been out of school for decades now. In the midst of it all, I never once thought about how many papers the teacher would have to grade or how consumed they had been, trying to write the perfect lesson plan. I just did the work and tried to keep the grumble to a minimum. But you're right...an assignment doesn't end when the student turns it in. I salute you and your quest to challenge your students. They will think of you and give thanks for you when life gets difficult. And it always gets difficult.

Elle said...

That's a beautiful picture. When I was in school I used to love teachers like you. They seemed to be few and far between though. Normally it was a basketball coach teaching history.

They meant well but showing the movie Back To The Future over and over again isn't exactly teaching. Although I do love that movie. ;)

Pagan Sphinx said...

Teaching is like that. You have to give it your all to do it well.

You caught a nice sunrise. That's always a nice thing. :-)

My Entry

Rachel Cotterill said...

Loving the pink sky! And a few extra moments' sleep is an opportunity to be grabbed with both hands ;)

paige said...

Nothing wrong with a little hard work. I always preferred the traditional way of learning - even as a kiddo.

Tortuga said...

Sounds like you needed a nap, hon, glad your body made you take one. I love your pics and Moo's, they're always so inspiring!

miss jo said...

Keep on cogitating profesora and stimulating that youthful gray matter...They will/do thank you, as I continue thanking my/our high school journalism teacher Julia Jeffress...I also had lazy teachers, whom I also remember but for different, sad reasons.

indicaspecies said...

I've always admired teachers and wonderful ones like you are to be admired and appreciated all the more.

This image is stunning. Cheers!

Serene @ MomFood said...

I'm glad teachers who give a damn still exist. Thanks!

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