Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Guilty Pleasures

 Through the wonders of teacher conference scheduling, I am OFF tomorrow.  The tradeoff time has been put in to allow for this annual extended Thanksgiving break, and I'm certain that I speak for every Donegal teacher when I proclaim that at the top of the thanksgiving list is the Wednesday - Tuesday extended break to regroup and head on back into the holidays and the end of the semester.

In addition to the extended break, the Wednesday before Thanksgiving is an annual celebration that rivals Thanksgiving itself for me professionally.  The Annual Gifted and Talented Thanksgiving Breakfast will commence tomorrow.  Current high schoolers and alumni will gather at the appointed hour at a local diner for a chance to catch up, reminisce, and eat Lancaster County Cookin', as well as do the usual stupid human tricks performed in diners like defying gravity with coffee cups and creamer packages.

And I will love every single minute of it.

The Te@chthought Blog Challenge for today, November 25 -

What would you like to let go of?

The obvious first choice would be weight.  I'd be fine with that.  Really.  But I suspect the prompt wasn't referring to my waist measurement, given that it was from an organization promoting metacognitive understanding in classrooms everywhere.  So, instead, I give you the big confession:

I would like to let go of the guilt.  

The guilt for staying at school longer than my husband would like, the guilt of taking home a stack of essays to grade and then ignoring them.  The constant wishing that I'd remembered to buy good tissues for my very deserving students who are already miserable with a cold and now having to blow their noses on something akin to sandpaper provided by the school.  The guilt of writing a college recommendation letter at the eleventh hour, and then realizing after I hit send  that I had the perfect anecdote to share about that student that now some Ivy League recruiter will never know about.  The feeling that these kids are way smarter than I will ever be and that I am letting them down by not stretching them to their limits because I can't even see how far those limits are.

It's Thanksgiving.  We've worked long days this week, we've laughed and cried with each other as we've said goodbye to another former student at much to young an age, and we're exhausted by the SLOs, the IEPs, and the CCS.  Teachers everywhere are thankful for Thanksgiving, not just for the obvious reasons, but for the recharging of the energy, and, perhaps, the stretchy pants that keep us from feeling guilty for not being what we think we should be for just a little while.