We together make a limb

Closing the Teach For America Blogging Gap
Jun 20 2013

Career Teaching and Teach For America Teaching

Alright, we all know we’re doing a different job. We have a different call to action. Sustainability and longevity aren’t necessarily at the forefront of our methods. I get that. I know that i’m trying to mentor, love, push, and teach these children in a way that is different (in a hopefully good way) but I’m struggling with reconciling my idea of “professionalism” I’m an education major and I’ve had to do a lot of comparing and contrasting the requirements and ideals of the these different perspectives. Is the definition consistent? I talk to my students after school every day and I’m often delving into conversations about their home life and personal life. I give advice and I deny my own experiences to an extent so that I can offer them a perspective of “taking the high road” and though this might cost me some authenticity I also feel it preserves my understanding of professionalism.

Yeah, I’ll talk to you about drug use and I’ll level with you about how prevalent it is and I’ll agree that you’ve done it and it hasn’t impacted you in the immediate sense but I’m also going to deny my own participation in that activity because I’m going to discuss long-term impacts and the type of friends and choices it will bring you. Previously, I’d have shut down the conversation immediately. Sure, I’ll drive you to school because the busses aren’t running this week and you really want to attent the summer school enrichment program but no, I won’t be alone in the vehicle with you. My undergraduate mentors would freak out about this. Okay, I’ll create a teacher-twitter so I can flood your feed with positivity and study skills in an effort to encourage a bridge between home life and school life but no I won’t be your facebook friend and I won’t let you follow me on Instagram. Yes, you can have my google voice number but no I will not answer the phone after 9pm.

My point is this: we make choices every day about how far we’ll go into the lives of our children and how far we will let them into ours. In making these decision how are we maintaining or reforming the idea of professionalism in the education system and at what cost are these things happening?

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    keep calm and teach on!

    South Carolina
    High School

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