Losing Altitude Fast

Mr. Teachbad is tired and rattled and needs this year to end. Anybody else? I went to bed at 7:30 last night. My wife came home, I handed off the kids and fell asleep. Today I felt only slightly less like eating glass all day.

I really need to get my third or fourth wind heading into the home stretch. But it’s tough. There’s nobody who wants to be here. Nobody. Everything is starting to fall apart. All the teachers and administrators who were the types to tell the kids to tuck in their shirts all day long would spend so much time on this in the beginning of the year. “We really want to build a school culture of shirt-tucking-inness to close the achievement gap.”

Well, the shirts are out. I don’t remember the last time I heard anybody talk about shirts being tucked in. We used to have very serious meetings about how important it is to uniformly enforce the dress code. Memos were written. There would literally be dress code raids in classrooms. Now, not so much. Aside from the shirts, the cell phones and the Doritos are also out. As is the soda. Mayhem. It takes real…skill?…I don’t know exactly what you call it when a teacher is able to continue to care, or at least pretend to care, about these things for the entire school year. I really can’t do it because I have never actually cared if anybody’s shirt has been tucked in or not, so even the faking it part is very hard for me by about September 8th. Not my style. So, why were we so worried about the shirts in the first place?

The wheels are coming off, as they always do this time of year. Even the most anal among us, even the earliest and most thirsty of the kool-aid guzzlers have begun to be worn down by the sheer silliness of it all. We turn a blind eye to the untucked shirt. We don’t get all serious and frowny every time we hear a student use “inappropriate language”. We assign less homework, which was rarely completed by anybody in the first place. We spend a greater portion of our planning period doing absolutely nothing. We look at the calendar. We look at the clock. We wish YouTube was not blocked on the school’s computers. We curse. We look at the clock. Fuck.

We think: “I really don’t want my planning period to end because then in will come my largest and most obnoxious class. But, on the other hand, every second that goes by is one more gone and brings me closer to my goal. So…I’ve been thinking about this for around 9 minutes…that’s about 2 percent of this day gone just doing that. Sweet.”

It’s all about the countdown now. Good luck and stay cool.

Mr. Teachbad

This entry was posted in Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink.

11 Responses to Losing Altitude Fast

  1. janine says:

    OH MY GOD! This is exactly what I am feeling and thinking! Each day the boredom (planning period) gets more and more oppressive. As for the not caring, absolutely true!

  2. hartfordteacher says:

    I’m losing it fast…my last class went ballistic on me today…and I couldn’t even muster up the energy to yell at them…..thank you for posting this…makes me feel less incompetent and more human.

  3. mrteachbad says:

    Just stay calm. Nobody really cares what happens in the last few weeks. Breathe deep and repeat some sort of mantra to yourself. I think it was “Meatballs” where Bill Murray said “it just doesn’t matter.” Check it out. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=g3S_k1dRbXY

  4. c says:

    True post. It is that time of year again folks. Silly season. Right now I can’t say who is losing it more; the staff or the kids. Gotta throw another month of worksheets at these ingrates then its “see you in September.”

  5. lynne says:

    Please, please keep writing this blog. I am not a teacher– only an AmeriCorps volunteer– but I have spent my term of service trying as hard as I can to do the job and being THWARTED at every turn. I am tired and depressed and the only thing keeping me going is knowing that the REAL teachers feel the same way and continue to face it with raw courage every single day.

    I am determined to never have kids, never set foot in a school, ever. I am going to be a disaster worker and I tell teachers all the time that I’d rather run into a burning building than do this job. I respect your efforts absolutely. You have a strength I’ve found that I lack.

  6. Leila says:

    I SO feel like this. I’m dead tired. I have given my all this year and feel like I just don’t have anything left to give. I manage to muster up just enough energy to teach my classes, but I haven’t graded anything in over a week because I fall asleep every night right after dinner. Please let this school year end!

  7. Hannah says:

    I am a new MS teacher and I see things seriously unraveling now that we’re in the home stretch. I’m losing control with every day. Problem is I have to be on my game and keep my students on task because I still have 2 more surprise observations left.

  8. teachj says:

    Hanna – Wow, I hate administrators who can’t get all their observations done by March.

    All I can say is thank goodness for all the extra curricular stuff going on in my school in May – dance shows, drama variety shows, prom, etc. This keeps my journalism kids busy and I can breath a little easier. Plus they know that their peers really WANT to see the results of their work – videos, photos, yearbook supplement, etc. That keeps them motivated – and I can go about the business of being totally unmotivated.

  9. GATeacher says:

    During the last 2 weeks of school we got an email saying that teaching should still be ocurring from “bell to bell”( 90 minutes in our school) until the last millisecond on the last day of school and that we could expect to be obeserved during any time during those 2 weeks…YAYY!!!

  10. teachj says:

    That email could only be sent by an administrator who has been out of the classroom far too long.

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 )

Twitter picture

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

Facebook photo

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

Google+ photo

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

Connecting to %s