Tomorrow begins the 2011-12 school year. My students are 11th graders and it will be our third year together. I'm actually looking forward to seeing them. Strange? Maybe. Or maybe it's because I've been blessed with a fabulous schedule for the first semester (an unusually light load of classes and students), or maybe it's because I'm insanely organized and a fanatic about having things in order WAY ahead of time. Each year of teaching bolsters my confidence, and this year is an exceptional one. I get to teach creative writing - totally my jam. This is what I do, and I love that I finally get to teach it my way to my students.
Maybe it's because I've long since realized that no school year is perfect. Some days are inspirational, and some days are total shit. Some days you want to hug all your students and some days you want to drop-kick their arrogant asses down the hallway. No one can be a hero every day, and no one should expect that. Teachers, just like their students, are human. Some of my students will think I'm awesome and I'll be their favorite, and others will want to shred me, or just call me "weird as f*ck." Yup, that happened last year. Whether I'm a bitch or I'm amazing, I'm me, And that's not going to change.
I know enough that this is not a popularity contest and that all subjects can't be won over. Some will be lost along the way. I will continue to trust my instincts. It's worked so far. I'll hope for the best, but be flexible enough to accommodate the unexpected. With teenagers and the machine that is public education, it's inevitable.
Whatever it is I'm ready. Bring it, punks.