Suddenly it’s hit me. I can’t focus on the screen I type words on…
A watery blur fills my sight and the more I fight it the more it flows.
But what is the purpose of these emotions?
Why is it that faced with what others perceive as an escape and as magical adventure I sit and throw words out into the ether?
There is a deep and unspoken joy in teaching that is lost in the bitterness, the unnecessary tasks and data chasing, the reduction of base values to the machinations of the governmental machine. There is a deep satisfaction from seeing young children arrive in your presence and leave as young adults. Cast into the world like a message in the bottle, a message that you aren’t even sure will ever be noticed or read, and it is not done for the thanks but for the love of the act of teaching.
I will miss that joy. A joy that more should be shouting about… Not to massage their own teaching ego, but to celebrate and allow learners to appreciate the purity of learning for learnings sake.
Maybe leaving as I have, taking on what I have and sharing the experience as openly and honestly as I can will inspire those that look on to start to treat their fears and the challenges they face, big or small, differently.
I know my reasons for leaving will be distorted so I need to make them coherent, without the use of fancy words or poetic constructs.
I leave to show that fear is not something that should stop us. The unknown and the chance of failure, small or large, shouldn’t stop us reaching beyond our perceived ability and as teachers, we should lead by example. If I have taught you and you read these words, then realise that I expect you to challenge yourself more in your final year than you have ever done so in the past. Not a token gesture, but a full onslaught on the limits you or others have placed on you over the last 4 years. You all possess what you need within and need to simply reach out and unlock it. You just need to do a few simple things:
Refuse to believe that you are not able.
Raise your standards higher than you ever have and refuse to let them drop.
Refuse to be ruled by your fears.
Refuse to stop trying.
As always the act of writing steadies the mind and emotions. I can now focus on what I have left to do before leaving my position as a teacher and hopefully facing the students I have tried to guide through my word and conduct. It is time to step out of the classroom and try a different way to guide them.