Sunday, September 14, 2008

Why I Want to Teach

So 99% of the people I know were pretty friggin' shocked when I said that I wanted to be a teacher. Anyone who knows me knows that my personality is sometimes a bit rough and that I don't have a whole lot of patience. That is mostly true, but for some reason, I find a lot of patience when it comes to helping others. I'm always the first one to respond when someone really needs something. So, I decided that teaching might be the right way to go.

Well, over the weekend I got to go see one of the kids I worked with in the theater department last year perform in "Into The Woods" at the Ann Arbor Civic Theater. I should preface this by saying how much I love working with the kids in Lincoln High's drama department. There are days when I sit at work counting down the minutes until I get to leave and go work with them. I know they're not my students really, because they have a teacher and a director, but I refer to them as my students anyway (shh! Don't tell Jacobs!) because I like to think that I am a mentor to them too, even if I'm not their teacher. But...I wish I was their teacher. I wish I got to spend my time working with them and helping them improve instead of sitting in my cubicle making more money for THE MAN!

Anyway, this weekend I got to see Analea perform a fairly large singing role in "Into the Woods" (she was Little Red if you know the show) and I seriously felt such a surge of pride watching her on stage that it was kind of overwhelming. I know her really well, and she's a great kid with a bright future, but I know she's seen her share of adversity as well. I mean heck, the music director at the high school tore to her bits last year (I am not a fan!), and yet she still had the confidence to get up on stage and audition again and she was successful. I know it doesn't sound like much, but that was a big deal to me that she carried on despite someone else trying to tell her not to. I love that she succeeded and that she's following her dream to be an actress, a dream I abandoned for many reasons but don't necessarily regret leaving because it's made me realize I want to teach English and Theater instead of performing. I felt more pride and happiness at watching this girl on stage than I have ever felt after performing myself. I know that I didn't have anything to do with her success really, it was all her and the work that Jacobs did with her while she was in school, but I was so proud to have been just a tiny part of that process. So there you have it, the reason I think teaching is awesome. Sure, there are going to be times when you're tested (I have been. His name is Thomas and it's like trying to control a muppet. :0D ) and not every kid is going to be a super success story, but if I can get even just one kid a year to be a success story and to do something successful where others thought they couldn't, that's enough for me. I love the feeling I get from watching those kids do well and improve and surpass any teaching I could ever give them. That's an amazing feeling. That's why I want to teach.
Photo stolen from Analea's Facebook without her permission. She can kill me later if she'd like.

1 comment:

Analea said...

Aw this touched me in my heart-soul. (Hamlet 2 reference...)
You had your hand, you were always there to support me anndd you came to see a Sondheim show that is all I could ever ask of you! :)