The Teachers Are Breaking

This week, I felt the powerful effects as my administrators made the choice to stand by their teachers. I felt the effects as my administrators heard that we, the teachers, were breaking and chose to reach out and work to understand what we were living and then used that understanding to motivate them to take bold actions to step in and help us to hold the fragile breaking pieces together. 

And I will tell you this. Their decision. Their choices to help us, they did not make a single one of us think, okay, now we don’t have to work so hard. Instead, they made us all feel a great sense of relief that allowed us to recommit ourselves to working harder than ever to best support our students and their needs. But we are now able to do it in a way that does not sacrifice us or our families quite as much.  

But not every educator is so lucky. In fact, too many are not. And so, for them, I write this post. Because I believe that when we share our stories, we can work to help others understand us. In fact, one of the very first lessons that I teach my fifth grade students each year is that writing our stories, sharing our stories, gives us the power to help shape and define how others see us. And right now, I think that the world needs to see that the teachers are breaking.  

Last week, I sat in a virtual faculty meeting and watched my coworkers, my fellow teachers, cry as we came together to discuss ways to navigate this new world of online teaching. We spoke of the work that we were already doing and the added work that still needed to be done. And I watched as my fellow teachers began to reveal the cracks that we had all been trying so desperately to cover up. 

Because for many of us, we do not want to complain. Because for many of us, we love our work and we love our students and we are grateful for the privilege of being a teacher.  And we also know too well, how quickly this world can shift. How we, as a country, seem to only operate in one of two dangerous and harmful extremes when it comes to teachers. We seem to swing between the narratives of “teachers are heroes” and “teachers are not doing nearly enough and we demand more!” 

Now I want to stop here. Before I say anything else. Because I know that already someone is reading this and thinking, “Those teachers should just be grateful that they have a job, when so many others are not as lucky.”

And I get that. I really do. This is an awful time for the world. 

But here is the thing. Systems that take advantage of their workers are often allowed to continue taking advantage of their workers because they convince those workers and others that they should just be grateful that they have a job. And I believe that we have reached a point in all this awfulness, that teachers need to start pushing back as we are pushed to, and beyond, our limits.  

Because if we continue to push teachers past their limits, then teachers cannot think critically about what we are doing for our students. When we are forced to operate in pure survival mode, then I believe there is a much greater potential that we will do harm to our students. And when we, as teachers, start to break, there is no way that we can fully be there for our students. And that’s why now is the time for us to share our stories. 

Because the teachers. We are breaking.

I have watched it happen over the past few weeks as teachers have shared, online and in person, their frustrations and desperation and cries of, “This is not sustainable!”

I think that all teachers are at their breaking points. We have all been asked to do an impossible thing. An impossible thing on top of all the other impossible things that the world of education demands from us. And many of those who were in tears at my faculty meeting are those of us who are trying to teach other people’s children while also trying not to neglect our own children who are supposed to be learning in our homes. And it is a losing battle.

I have a daughter. She is seven. She is the absolute light of my life. And while I try to be there for other people’s children, I am very surely failing my own. My daughter goes between my house and my ex-wife’s house. She is with me four out of five days during the school week. When she is with me, it is just her and me. There is no other adult. There are no siblings. It is just the two of us. I have pretty much fully given up on her eLearning, though I try to work in as much reading and writing and math as I can to the things that we do throughout the day. At this point, I have seen her very fragile academic skills regress and I have had to give myself permission for that to be okay. I have to trust that one day, she will learn what she needs to learn, even if that day is not today. Because today, we are just trying to survive.

I am committed to getting her through this crisis and I am also committed to getting my students through this crisis. But to do that, I have had to make adjustments. For me, here is what that looks like: After I put my daughter to bed, I begin another three hours of school work. I look through student work, I provide feedback, I answer emails, I answer questions from students. I am often up until 11 or 12 at night doing the work that will support my students and their families the next day.

And on the two days that my daughter is not with me, I spend almost every single minute of those days preparing instruction for the week ahead.  I attempt to take a curriculum that was built for conversations and face-to-face interactions and I attempt to transfer that onto an online forum. I create smaller versions of the charts that would hang in my classroom and I photograph them to share with my students. I create slideshows that model for my students the work that I am asking them to do that week. I record lesson after lesson after lesson in an attempt to provide my students with the instruction that will support them and move them forward in the way that I believe is best for them.  I spend hours recording the read alouds that I will post throughout the week because I believe that if anything can hold our community together while we are physically apart, it is a shared reading experience. I do all of this ahead of time because I have realized that it is the only way that I can manage this all and manage my own child as well.

And during the week, when my students need me, I find a way to be there. I have set up ways for us to check in with each other every day, I look through the work they are doing as they are doing it and I leave comments and feedback to make them feel seen and also to support them in moving forward in their work. I have created multiple platforms for them to use to stay connected to each other and I have found ways to let them know that I am connecting with them there as well. I am emailing with students and their families constantly. I am on the phone with parents when they need me. I have set up sessions with students who need extra support. I have set up one class meeting every week where we just check in and chat and look at each other’s pets. Often, my daughter joins us on these calls (and often that is the most stressful part of our week). I have set up an additional time during the week when students can Zoom with me if they have specific questions about their work that they need help with. And I have worked all of this around my own child and the schedule that we have.

It has been so much. But I found a way to make it work. I am exhausted. I am at the very edge of what I can manage. But I am making it work. Other teachers have found their own ways to make it work. One teacher spoke at our meeting about getting up at 5 am to get her work done before her own children woke up and before her husband, an essential worker, had to leave for the day. It is an awful way to live and an awful way to teach, but we are making it work. We have found a way to do it.

And that is good enough. 

Until we are told by the world that it isn’t enough.

That is why we are crying. Because so many of us are giving so much. We have been taking away time from our own families to be there for our students and their families. We are doing it not because it is all mandated, not because we have been told we have to do all these things, we are doing it because we love our kids. Our students and our own children at home. That love has pushed us to do more and to give more and for many of us there just isn’t another option.

And then yet somehow, we are made to feel, by the world, that it is still not enough.  

Sometimes that feeling comes from the media as article after article details the problems with the way teachers are teaching. Other times, that feeling comes from worried parents. Parents who are seeing their own children struggling, who are worried that schools are not doing enough to help them. Parents who go to Facebook or other social media outlets and begin to discuss. 

So through the media and social media people’s problems with educators are broadcast and other people want to fix them. And I get that sometimes it seems like these are easy problems to fix. Asking one more small thing of teachers shouldn’t be a big deal. Right?

Except the weight of those decisions are not always felt by the people who make them. Instead, oftentimes, they are felt intensely by those of us who are already standing on the very edge of what we are able to do and then are being asked to do just a little bit more. But that little bit more, comes on top of all the other work that we are already figuring out how to do. And suddenly, it feels impossible. A small ask, feels like a huge demand. And that is why there are tears. Because we are standing on the edge already and just one more thing has the capability of pushing us right over that edge.

Too often in education, mandates are made as quick reactions to complex problems. They often are attempts to quickly stop a problem before we even take the time to investigate that problem and how it is affecting our students and what variety of ways there might be to fix any needs that are not being met. 

Because if the conversation really centers around children, then we would start not with a mandate, but by, instead, asking questions like, “How are you allowing your students to feel a part of a community? How are you working to meet the needs of your students and their families? How are you checking in on your students mental health and well-being? How are you being there for your students?” And then we can have a conversation. We can work together, as a team of parents and teachers and students and administrators to think about the myriad of ways that we can support our students. We can honor the fact that our students are all different and we are all different and there is no one right way to do all of this.

But all of this is hard. All of this is messy. It seems easier, sometimes, to just make one, consistent rule and demand that everyone follow it.

But what I have learned is this, complex problems cannot be solved by simple rules and mandates. Difficult problems that seem to be solved simply have not really been solved at all. And I have never faced a teaching problem more difficult than the one we are currently in, so to think that there is any one easy answer or one way of doing things that is going to fix the problems that our students are facing, that seems impossible to me. 

Instead, what I think we need is to take a breath. To take a pause. To have difficult conversations. To listen to the realities that we are all living in. To hear the stories of others. Because, ultimately, I think that is what has helped my own district. We stopped. We listened to the stories of students and of parents and of teachers and of administrators and we used those stories to gain better understanding. And from a place of  better understanding, we are able to make better decisions. And when we lack understanding, we stop and reach out and ask for more stories. 

And I guess that is why I am writing this.  Because maybe someone will read it and it will help them to reach a little bit better of an understanding. 

Maybe there is a teacher who will read this who will feel a little bit less alone and maybe a little bit more seen.

Maybe there is a parent who will read this who will decide to reach out to their child’s teacher with concerns and to share their family’s story first with the teacher before turning to social media.

Maybe there is an administrator who will read this who was about to ask one more thing of their teachers and will instead decide to ask, “What are you already doing to support your students? How can I help you to do that?”

And maybe not. Maybe this was just for me. Because I needed it all to be said. And that will be good enough, too.

50 thoughts on “The Teachers Are Breaking

  1. Jess, thank you for writing these words. I have followed your twitter posts and often dream of reaching out to share how thankful I am to have found your words there & here on your blog. You definitely spoke to me as a 5th grade reading teacher & mom of three in school with a partner who heads out to work & tries to help children stay healthy each day. Tonight, I am grateful for your words. Inch by inch. (my dad’s words I keep repeating in my head) We are in this together and I am sending a virtual hug your way. Stay safe.

    • I can’t tell you how much this post meant to me. I do not feel supported at all right now. I feel terrified I am not doing enough and may not have a job next year or years to come. Many days I think I may not survive this year. My volunteer work at my church allows me to see families through a different set of eyes. I see mothers crying because they are working two jobs. Those moms come home at night and try to do online schooling. Some of those moms are facing other trauma in their lives too. God please help us survive this time.

  2. Jess, thank you for sharing this. I was disappointed to have missed the earlier version because I knew from the title/preview that it was words I needed to hear. Having just been through an intense back-and-forth after being asked to do that “just one more thing” from my administration (and with a 2-year old at home), I have also been struggling with feeling disrespected on top of knowing I’m trying to do everything I possibly can for my students. Thank you for giving us all a voice and a reflection.

  3. I also was disappointed to have missed the earlier version–the paragraph that showed up in my inbox spoke so strongly to me, and I’ve been hoping to have another chance to read your words. I am in awe of how much you’re doing for your students. I’m glad that your administration was able to recognize teachers’ need for support.

    • Jess, you speak for all teachers, including this college-level professor, who has ~not~ been able to find the level of teaching excellence you have described, with a 7th grader at home and a husband-professor-administrator who was sick with the virus for 20-days and afterward has had to make up all the work he missed (so no “pay-back” time to make up my own lost work time while solo-parenting & nursing him). I am grateful to know, from your words, that I am “seen,” and wish you and everyone all the self-compassion and future-if-not-present respect from others you deserve!

      • Cindy, I hear you! That is one thing you don’t hear much about – adding a sick family member into the mix of all this. My husband was also sick with the virus.

        Thank you so much for this piece. Yes, I am thankful to have a job and be working. Yes, other families have it much worse. But, this is exhausting.

    • Thank you, Jess. You had me at the title. I’m a 2nd grade teacher with two teenage boys who explain eLearning as “Google Teenage Daycare”. We teachers ARE heroes, essential to every household we now invade via Zoom calls on a daily, and we CAN do this, and do it WELL …not for anyone other than the students we care so deeply about. Kudos to you. Hug your daughter and trudge forward! 🙂 Hindsight’s 2020.

  4. You write with such truth and clarity — I’ve heard the stories from a wide range of perspectives and somehow you bring them all together in a single blog. Thank you, dear, dear Jess.

  5. Thank you! As a teacher of first graders I am not in the slightest bit worried about their academic skills! They will learn those when they are somewhere back with their teachers. Right now I want them safe and happy with their moms and/or dads. Right now I want them free of trauma, free of worry, free of fear!

  6. Thank you for sharing your story. I’m sure it will be an encouragement for those who are struggling. One day teachers say, “Goodbye! See you tomorrow!” and the next day, teachers are told to ‘do school’ from home. I attended a NBPTS webinar right after things shut down and many the teachers were simply left to figure it out, with no direction from their district. Others were given massive directives that seemed impossible to fulfill. Thanks again for sharing.

  7. Pingback: Elementary, My Dear, or Far From It | Virtual Appreciation Note: Jess Lifshitz

  8. So very true. We are not ok. Not even a little. And as states and federal governments get ready to “open” things back up — I wonder if any of them will stop to consider teachers. Or ask an educator what they think should happen when schools open. You said it all just right!

  9. I completely hear you about your struggle and thank you for your candor. This is teachers everywhere. Being a teacher and a parent in the same time and place is incredibly challenging. I don’t teach in America, but I teach in an American school overseas and we are having the same struggles. Our elementary school is talking about reopening and many teachers are afraid to go back to work too soon.
    I’ve linked an interesting article about the impact of lost school time based on research by John Hattie. https://www.abc.net.au/news/2020-04-17/will-missing-school-due-to-covid-19-matter-for-school-students/12154266
    I believe, our students and our children will be fine educationally. I agree our real focus should be on the social emotional learning right now and just being there for our own children and our struggling students. We need to take care of our own health so we can be there for them as best we can. Never mind the standards and assessments, right now students need safety and structure and we need simplicity.
    Here’s an opinion from an Education professor:

    Here’s another from Let Grow:
    https://nypost.com/2020/03/29/coronavirus-is-providing-the-course-correction-kids-desperately-needed/?fbclid=IwAR0QXF-DhOsfpC_Z2TLVV5Kfe5MkTYfdxE3pBS7Y4Zxzv3133ELUREXhnbM
    Do less. It will be more than enough.

  10. Thank you…you have given me the courage to be honest about not knowing anything about a test-making task I have been asked to do…

    • I hope that this time has been a positive one for re-evaluation of our role for our students and our role as educators in general. Teachers on the whole are caring, nurturing, and passionate; however, it is those same traits that lead too many of us into martyrdom. It is only when you take charge of your time, can you truly be there for others. Angela Watson’s 40 Hour Teacher Workweek has really helped me prioritize what is under my control and worth my energy vs. what is outside of my control or reaps little reward for the effort. Administrators took advantage for too long. It is up to us to set boundaries (especially within ourselves) without falling into the trap of feeling like we must not be good teachers if we aren’t suffering.

  11. Very helpful increasing our understanding of community in general and the challenges of teaching in particular.

  12. Your words hit home with this teacher. Thank you for so eloquently stating what I am feeling. I don’t know how much will change in the remainig weeks of school, but there is comfort in knowing that our experiences are not solely our own.

  13. Amazing words and experiences from a valued teacher that is actually living our life and it’s challenges. I began teaching at my school back in February since I recently relocated from Puerto Rico. I have a 4th grader doing virtuals one hour a day with his teacher. He wakes up at 9 am and works on Science, Reading and Math to make sure he is able to ask questions and clarify doubts with his teacher at 12 noon virtually. Meanwhile, I am on the district laptop from 7:30 until…I teach 4 groups of 6th graders and I virtually meet with them 1-2 hrs weekly, however, I am also providing small group lessons or one-on-one lessons when my kids need it. Whenever I DO try to help my son (4th grade), it’s nerve racking, however, we are living temporarily with my sister and she has been a BIG HELP in Eli’s remote learning. This is DEFINITELY a work in progress, so PLEASE KNOW that our kids, at home and at school, REALLY DO APPRECIATE US and sometimes that is ALL WE NEED to get by. It’s been a bumpy road, but when I hear my students say, “Thank you Ms, Have a nice day, I miss being in the classroom, Wish we could be back at school, We didn’t spend enough time with you, We miss you, We want to be back at school, It’s not the same as having YOU help us in the classroom, Oh, I understand now, Can you please give me another example…” I appreciate my vocation even more. So teachers everywhere, pat yourselves in the back, but yourself something nice online, and have a nice tall glass of wine because WITHOUT YOU, THIS WOULD NOT BE POSSIBLE!! You are TRULY UNIQUE and your kids love you dearly!

  14. You hit all of the key points about teachers needing to be everything for all students and still take care of themselves and family. These were issues before online learning, but I believe the stark novelty of this situation worldwide just may bring the educational reform that our profession has needed. Schools have been asked to do more than educate children, providing all the basic needs and more. With limited resources, many teachers then make up for by sacrificing their own resources of time and money. No blanket mandates will fix real problems that are unique to teachers, students, and communities. Until society decides to step back and step up, the education system will continue to break. Thank you for speaking up with our story. Be a parent first! Your child will benefit the most.

  15. Jess, thank you. I am an elementary principal and your words were timely and resonated with me. I’ve been sitting in weekly PLC meetings with my teachers trying to ‘check-in’ on how everyone is doing and get a feel for what is needed from me, and I get crickets or smiles and head nods. Thank you for sharing your truth, sharing your stories and perspective with me (and everyone). I hope your courage and bravery will inspire more teachers to share their truth, their real experience through this mess, and feel comfortable with exposing vulnerability with their administrators or supervisors. I am ashamed to admit this, but I was (see past tense) one of those administrators who was unintentionally adding ‘just one more thing’ to an already over-filled plate for teachers and staff. I thought providing professional development for faculty and staff around how to support and respond to students during and after a crisis would be helpful – but it was clear they were not ready for this information – they are still grappling with learning various digital platforms and planning day-to-day. Like you said, we’re in survival mode. I have since revisited my thoughts and expectations around PD, and I have also reframed how I am checking in with teachers to encourage more dialogue and conversation so hopefully, we all start feeling more connected and supported by one another. Again, thank you for this much-needed, and much-appreciated wake-up call. For all the educators – Happy Teacher Appreciation Day/Week/Year/Lifetime…you are amazing!

  16. I am glad to see that I am not alone in this. I’ve had my good weeks but suddenly, I have a week that completely makes me feel like I’m falling off the deep end. Thank you for the reassurance that all will work out in the end.

  17. Thank you for taking the time to express so eloquently what is real in my heart right now. Be well and know you are not alone.

  18. Thank you for sharing this post. For the first time I have felt that someone else gets what I am going through!! First month I was in panic mode and still am now in survival mode. I have a 1 yo and a 5 yo who need so much attention with a husband who is gone at work 12 hours a day and our school is doing synchronous learning so I was trying to figure out holding live zoom classes with kids at home. It has been so so hard and have felt like just crying many days. Some days my zoom classes are a bit of a circus show but my high schoolers have been so understanding. And yes to staying up until 11 or 12 pm every single night to get prep done for the next day while the kids are sleeping.

    This post put into words exactly what I have been struggling with! Thank you for reminding us to make sure that what we are doing is sustainable. Have found drop off childcare help for my 1yo and now only have to worry about my 5yo while I teach online and that has made a world of a difference. And we can do this right?? Five more weeks to go!!

  19. Jess, the timing of your blog is perfect as I reached my breaking point this week. I am struggling to watch two granddaughters so their parents can keep working and working a full day plus trying to teach my class of third graders. When someone tells me “it shouldn’t take very long to add this every week” to satisfy a special request from a parent, I want to scream.I I feel less alone after reading this. Thank you from the bottom of my heart for being willing to share your story!

  20. I literally was in the middle of a complete breakdown when I saw this posted by one of my friends. I even shoved my phone in my boyfriend’s face and said “here—it’s not just me” as I pointed to the title of the article (he’s about as sympathetic as a thumbtack).

    So, thank you. My tears have stopped. My face isn’t funky and blotchy anymore. I’m actually even smiling a little as I’m writing this, and it’s because I needed to know that I’m not alone. It’s really easy to fall into that pit of despair right now. It’s amazing how powerfully someone else’s words can help drag us out and renew us, though.

    I think your article, ironically, has helped me to feel less broken, and a little closer to just being very extremely bent! Thank you from the bottom of my heart ❤️

  21. Will be sharing this on my educator FB page. I am one of the fortunate ones whose district thought of the teachers. We are constantly getting emails of encouragement from our administrators, right up to our superintendent.
    I think , as educators,we are harder on ourselves then we need to be. I feel for those teachers who are being harangued and micro-managed, all while taking care of their own families. Thank you for sharing!

  22. Thank you for making me feel less alone. I have no idea how or why I stumbled across your article today, but it was if my words were written in front of me as a I was reading it as tears rolled down my face. I’ve been a teacher for almost 20 years and have lived and taught through many very hard situations, but this experience has made me question my entire outlook on what my priorities are in my life. People who are loving remote teaching during this time make me question their intentions as teachers because the critical human interaction piece and social emotional aspect that is so intertwined with teaching has been completely striped away from us all without warning and our worlds have been tossed into this new way of teaching for now. I truly feel that this experience will allow our field to help weed out the people who were teaching solely because it was a job vs those of us who are teachers because it is our passion and life work. The ones who check the boxes and enjoy sitting behind computers will enjoy remote learning and will not enjoy returning to students and I have found are dealing with this experience much better than those of us who cannot imagine not teaching in an actual classroom again. We think about our students non-stop, we work non-stop – as you said- not because we have to but because it’s in our hearts to ensure our kiddos are okay. You are so correct because we are not okay, our families are not okay and this is just so hard. Thank you again for your perfectly timed article. You have such a gift with words ❤️

    • “The critical human interaction piece and social emotional aspect that is so intertwined with teaching has been completely striped away from us all without warning and our worlds have been tossed into this new way of teaching for now” YES, exactly. And that- that powerful level of human connection, is irreplaceable online. Thank you for your words and thank you to the writer of this blog. Words resonate with my experience- all of it.

  23. Teaching was never meant for a screen. It’s the human interaction between humans that makes it the connection . When a teacher is an expert they have established a relationship with their students that makes it a memorable class. Everyone is changing and adapting to this serious pandemic. But by adapting, we will come out stronger, more compassionate and better people. Better educators! I am so thankful for everyone who is adapting and putting all kids first!

  24. I’m in a rural school district where internet access is very limited. Even for families who do have it, their access is strained by parents and siblings who have to share. The positive thing our administration has done was make the rest of this year Pass/Fail (optional) and had us create a weekly readings/project – project based assessment- rather than daily lesson plans. We handed out laptops with downloaded materials. Our superintendent also had local business set up WiFi so students/parents could access from the car. We also cannot require online video Meets or Zooms because most of our students can’t. I have optional Meets for my advanced classes but not required.

  25. Wow. This was just like I had written it myself! Thanks for posting it and letting the world know exactly how we teachers/parents are feeling. It also reinforced for me that there are more teachers feeling this pressure than just my immediate group of teacher friends.

  26. Jess, you’ve affirmed a lot in these paragraphs for so many educators. I always think the comments in a post are an indication of how something resonates with people. You just gave people a bigger voice, today. I wish you and your family a little more balance each day.

  27. All of us are struggling to do what is right for our students. I never considered how hard simple directions would be to follow when I could not tell my students face to face. I never anticipated trying to teach without being able to see what my students are seeing on the screen and troubleshooting to help them out. I never anticipated working 10-15 hours a day to develop lessons to transform lessons into a digital interactive format that could help students moving forward while trying to help my elderly father and 14-year-old daughter stay on top of her emotions and school work.
    Thank you for sharing because it helped me realize, I am not alone in this struggle.

  28. Pingback: On Teaching Now: New Podcast and A Call for More Teacher Voices – Annie Tan

  29. I’m sorry you’re having such a tough ride with this. My district in Maryland has really limited what teacher’s need to do. We are not creating lessons, zooming with students, or recording videos of ourselves reading/teaching. Students are participating in an adaptive math and literacy platform for 40 minutes per day. We have provided ideas for optional enrichment opportunities. Our only real requirement is some professional development, staff and PLC meetings, and reaching out to parents with their student’s progress at least once per week. I almost feel guilty for pulling a paycheck for this….but, then I remember how hard I’ve worked for the last 20 years and that guilt quickly subsides! Hang in there everyone, this too shall pass!

  30. Thank you for writing so eloquently about the complex issue of distance learning from the teachers’ point of view, who happened to have loved ones to take care of too, as well as their own selves!
    I came upon the work of Conscious Teaching.org: “Distance Learning Done Better” with Grace Dearborn. And yes! I registered in this self-paced webinar because as an administrator I wanted to make sure I’d have realistic expectations on my work and on our teachers’ work.
    It is not about doing more, but doing it better. The distinction between quarantine distance learning and distance learning by choice is an important one. Many of our students do not have all the resources at home, we have to be sensitive to this and still support them in their learning. Stress is all around us, the fact that we are in front of a computer screen dealing with school issues is already adding huge stress to our bodies and minds. I cannot see the smile on a child’s face or hear the words of encouragement from a colleague. We need to be realistic and like you said, do not push anyone past the breaking point. This is an opportunity to look at what we do and redefine it.
    I highly recommend this 90 minute webinar!!!
    Happy Teacher Appreciation Week!

  31. This is a heartwrenching post. You are breaking your back for your students and your own child during an extremely difficult and unprecedented time. You are enough but please, do not continue to do so much that you break. Your students and child need you. If you break, they will not have you. Society is and can be cruel to those who are exceptional at what they do – making us feel we are not enough and that is just not right. Surround yourself with those you know WILL support you and your needs. Thanks for sharing your thoughts. I hope they are widely read.

  32. Every week I break again. New challenges, mandates, and obligations pile deep. I manage, mitigate, plan, adapt. I try again. I care. I problem-solve. I lose sleep. I cry. I get back up again. I dream that this time I have the solution-a panacea, not for the pandemic, but to move beyond crisis mode and into something more sustainable for my life as an 8th grade English teacher, as a parent of a seventh grader and a third grader, as a human during a time of fear and isolation. I am down, but not defeated. Be well. Be strong. Keep on teaching on.

  33. I have a seven year old too and have been awful to her because I don’t give her the same patience I would give someone else’s kid! Yet I expect more from her too…it’s not fair to her and I know it but it is like a vicious cycle week after week which kills me because I don’t want her coming out of this with less confidence than she already lacks and it’s because of our expectations on these little kids…my husband says play math games and read the rest will come later but as a teacher you feel like you are failing your colleagues by not doing their lessons. You know how hard you work on them and want them to feel validated …Trying to keep up is a joke! It doesn’t work! Thanks for the message and hang in there….YOU are not alone!x

  34. Pingback: Reopening School: What it Might Look Like – NEWS-NEWS.NEWS

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s