Hi everyone! I tend to start off every post out of habit with saying “I hope you are all having a good day” when in fact, I really mean I hope whatever kind of day your having that your embracing it and then moving on from it! Life is so strangely different now and to be honest, I do find myself wondering when we will return to ‘normal’ again, whatever that might mean! So in today’s post I really just wanted to talk about what life is really like as a teacher for me, which is really what my blog is all about.
I’ve mentioned before that I am a substitute teacher. I’ve been teaching in an Early Intervention unit for the last 2 years and honestly, I really loved my job! In saying that, as it wasn’t a permanent contract, I found myself one Thursday afternoon closing the classroom door knowing I’ll probably never return to the same class again. No one could have envisaged what was to happen but let’s be truthfully honest, we are very lucky to have such amazing front line heroes that really are holding this country together!
I have a roof over my head, food in my fridge and a warm place to sleep at night so in the grand scheme of things, I really am very lucky. But this doesn’t mean that I still don’t worry about what’s to come. Unfortunately I have been left unemployed, as with thousands of others in the country. I’m not complaining, I know I could be in a lot worse of a position but I get upset when people say “what have you to worry about, there’s people in a lot worse positions than you”. I understand that many others have more to worry about than me but that doesn’t make my worries any less important and I think that’s what I really want to get across in this post. It doesn’t matter how big or small your worries or problems are – they’re YOUR worries and problems and that’s what makes them important.
A day in my life as a teacher is very different now than what it was 2 months ago. Due to not having a class during this pandemic, when I see other teachers online plan amazing work for their classes every day, it makes me feel quiet anxious. I feel like I’m letting people down because I’m a qualified teacher that’s sitting at home while parents around the country might be struggling with home schooling their children. That is why I decided to set up this blog – to try and give back something! But as the days go on, some days are more productive than others and I find myself being very harsh on myself if I wasn’t keeping up with a consistent workload or sharing brand new innovative ideas every day.
I’ve often scrolled through twitter and read tweets about teachers “sitting at home doing nothing” during this pandemic. That hurts. To all those people, just spare a thought for the countless hours teachers put in AFTER school hours before this pandemic begun. Spare a thought for all teachers now who are not coping with technology but spend hours figuring it out and buying the latest gadgets online just to help your kids. Spare a thought for the teachers who might be unemployed but still get up every morning and spend their day making resources and sharing ideas to keep your kids busy all day. We are only a small fraction of the Irish workforce, but just know, we are doing everything we possibly can.
No one could have imagined what life would be like during this and if your coping then honestly you should be so proud of yourself. If your not, just know there are people feeling anxious or depressed now that may have never experienced these feelings before. Sometimes I don’t feel like I am either. Thinking of the future is almost too scary now but a brighter one is coming and you need to keep believing in that. There will be dark days and they are scary but the brighter days that have still yet to come will outshine and we will be able to see our family and hug our friends again. We will all get back into our classrooms and we won’t be as quick to take daily life for granted. Life will be so much richer in ways we couldn’t have dreamed about before this pandemic.
But until then, to all the frontline workers, especially the doctors and nurses who cared for my grandad these past few weeks so he could return home safe and sound – we will forever be in your debt x
-An Irish Primary School Teacher