Dear teachers: You’ve got this.3 min read
Below is the text from the video above.
This might be the hardest year so far of your entire teaching career. You may have never been this stressed before. Never felt this much pressure. Had this much work to do. Felt this isolated. If you’re like many, this has been the hardest year of your career so far. but I’m guessing this isn’t the first hard year you’ve had as a teacher. Meaning, while you may not have been here before, this ain’t your first rodeo.
You’ve had to adapt in the past, work under pressure, deal with technical difficulties, work through uncertainty, you’ve had to struggle. I wish this weren’t the case, but teaching is usually challenging and so you aren’t new to challenges. But you are new to teaching during pandemics. You might be new to leading a virtual classroom or one in which kids have to sit apart from each other while wearing masks. You might be new to the uncertainty of what tomorrow is going to look like in the classroom. But because of the unique skills you’ve developed as a teacher before the pandemic, you have what it takes to make it through it. It may not always feel like that, especially on those extra hard days, but you’re still here. you’ve made it this far, and you’ve helped your students make it as well. so keep using those skills and traits that you’ve developed as an educator to find new ways to keep making it. To find new ways to help your students keep engaging. Discover new ways to thrive during this time.
You have what it takes. When you look at your life as an unfolding story, you see that it was through the challenges and struggles that you obtained the skills and gained the strength that help you in future struggles. Dealing with a Wi-Fi outage 3 years ago helped teach you how to deal with technical difficulties now when your Zoom meeting crashes. Figuring out how to calm a parent down at conferences last year probably taught you something about how to communicate with parents now in this tense time. Having a lesson you thought was awesome utterly fail has prepared for the lessons now that will sometimes inevitably fail.
The struggle made you stronger.
Which begs the question, how is this struggle that we’re in now going to make you stronger later on. What skills will you have because of teaching during a pandemic that will serve you once this pandemic is over? How might you be a better teacher when all of this is said and done?
This isn’t about finding a silver lining and just being positive in the midst of a challenging time. It’s about becoming aware of the undeniable fact that we grow in hardship. That growth doesn’t happen at the summit of the mountain at the place where it’s all good, but it happens down in the valley. And so keep using those tools in your arsenal that you gained from your time as an educator before the pandemic, and keep an eye out for new ones that you are developing during it. You’ve got this.