Teachable Moments

I have never wanted to be a teacher. Mainly because I knew I had zero talent and aptitude for that very important job. Nothing brought home the accuracy of that statement like having children of my own when the act of trying to teach my son to tie his shoes left both of us crying. 

Now, that’s not to say that I haven’t been a teacher in some capacity. Back in the day I taught swimming lessons. That was probably the peak of my teaching prowess. When it comes to flutter kicks and blowing bubbles in the water I have mad skills. 

I also was a vacation bible school “teacher” and let’s just say the lord wasn’t with me on that journey. It was a disaster. Note, I didn’t say I was a disaster. That is because to this day, I don’t think it was my fault my class went rogue in the sanctuary and lassoed Jesus.

If you’re confused about lassoes in a church sanctuary, well welcome to my world. Who in the right mind would have picked a VBS theme of “Saddle Up with Jesus” and not think something untoward would happen? 

The short answer is a person who wasn’t acquainted with high energy children with active imaginations.  Because when you give kids the VBS craft of making lassos you’ve got to know that at least a couple of kids are going to go into wild west show mode and a statue of Jesus will get lassoed – more than once.

People, and by that, I mean the VBS chairperson totally overreacted and had a hissy fit which led to talk about me being “removed from my duties.” To this day I’m sure she’s still praying for me. But you know not in a sincere way. When that woman said, “I’ll be praying for you” it was an insult wrapped in a bible.

This journey down “why I’m not a teacher lane” was prompted by finding out that several of my daughter’s friends are about to embark on teaching careers. I’m so excited for these new graduates and the lucky kids that will get to have them as teachers. 

But I’m also scared for them. Do they really know what they’re getting into? Did their university education include courses on dealing with hostile parents or school shooters? I sure hope so because these newbie teachers are entering waters that get more turbulent and dangerous by the day. 

A study released this spring by the American Psychological Association found that a third of teachers faced verbal abuse or threats of violence from students and parents in the 2020/2021 school year. I know I should be profoundly shocked by this but after seeing what went on at some of the local school board meetings I’m not. 

I don’t have any I can understand people being upset and frustrated but I’ll never be able to wrap my head around taking out those emotions on anyone else most especially your child’s teachers. Furthermore, if your child knows you don’t value their teacher they won’t. And that’s a big problem that can manifest itself into a host of behavioral and academic performance issues.

This kind of attitude also increases the chances of an educator leaving the profession. My son is four years older than my daughter and I asked him if any of his high school friends that got education degrees are still teaching. He got on LinkedIn and reported back to me that not a single one of his peers that went into teaching are still in the classroom. 

This alarmed me. The teaching exodus is like the canary in the coal mine. It’s an early warning sign of danger. Without good teachers we’re in big trouble. So, I’m hoping these newly graduated educators will receive support and respect so they can not only flourish but also want to stay in their chosen profession.

🎉Attention! Did you know I have a new book out? 📘 The title is Empty and it’s available in ebook AND paperback.

😀Here’s a little lookie loo at the fun: 

They’re broke, bitter, and not ready to give up without a fight.

Three middle-aged women, who have seen their carefully crafted lives take a precipitous financial plunge, forge an unlikely friendship while getting paid to take part in a clinical trial for a new menopause drug. The trio spends a month sequestered at a pharmaceutical testing facility that has all the charm of a nail salon inside a Walmart, and bond over their anger and disbelief that their only hope for some quick cash is leveraging the remaining estrogen they have lurking in their ovaries. 

Each of these women has a recent story of their existence hurtling to hell. Maria had a career catastrophe so epic that googling her name is now painful. Cassie’s extreme vanity took an ugly turn and Julie’s husband didn’t just walk out on their marriage, he disappeared with all the money

Once they become roommates, this cadre of unlikely friends merge their talents to find Julie’s missing husband and her half of the “marital assets.” Maria has major accounting mojo, Julie has connections, and Cassie, a former soap opera actress, has acquired an assortment of shady skills during her Hollywood tenure.

As they plot, scheme, and embark on an adventure to find an AWOL spouse, they learn how to fight back against a world they believe deems them old and insignificant and, in the process, discover that fifty is when life gets fun, especially when you can get even.