Atlas, it’s time to shrug.
Dear Betrayed Teacher,
I feel your pain. I feel your pain so deeply that I had to leave the love of my life because it betrayed me. I am a betrayed teacher.
The education of a child is one of life’s most promising & fragile gifts & you, my dear are contributing to its destruction.
The powers that be do NOT care that you are sacrificing your free time, your family time, your sanity, your cash out-out-of-pocket, your health, & your dignity.
They are Big Brother & their purpose is to drive you to self-sacrifice on a treadmill never stops & only picks up speed while objects are hurled at you from all directions while you use all of your effort to gain some advantage in life. In fact, they are counting on your propensity for continued self-sacrifice.
They want you to give in, stop thinking, & let them tell you what to do.
“A really efficient totalitarian state would be one in which the all-powerful executive of political bosses & their army of managers control a population of slaves who do not have to be coerced, because they love their servitude.”
― Aldous Huxley, Brave New World
Were you a young child when you grabbed for that brass ring? I was. I knew since age 9 that it was my purpose. Maybe you figured it out later in life. Think back to why you became a teacher.
Is there any part of that still alive in your classroom today?
I became a teacher because of chocolate bars I won for spelling bees, the dinosaur we made in class of papier mache’, & the forts we built in the classroom where we’d giggle & chat when our work was complete. Those were the days of school that I remember. I remember kickball, & lots and lots of happy friends. THAT is why I became a teacher.
I did not become a teacher to torture children with testing, to pile on homework in an effort to give a child a “good education”, to neglect my own family to grade papers for hours nightly & spend Sundays trying to find fun educational activities that matched learning styles, covered standards, built in support for disabilities, only to realize that my kids didn’t have the foundational knowledge to really understand; nor did I have the allotted time to teach them.
I was swimming in circles & so are you.
Are you inspiring learning or are you focused on survival? Are your students inspired learners or do they vacillate between compliant robots & frustrated anarchists grabbing for the real world?
I’m not talking about the ‘real world’ where people buy 200 watermelons to share with 15 friends on the 17th day of an event.
I’m talking about the real world where learning is fun, engaging, empowering, & addicting. Where taking risks, making mistakes, & learning really is a way of life.
When was the last time you couldn’t wait to go to school?
It’s been even longer for your students.
“If you saw Atlas, the giant who holds the world on his shoulders, if you saw that he stood, blood running down his chest, his knees buckling, his arms trembling but still trying to hold the world aloft with the last of his strength, and the greater his effort the heavier the world bore down upon his shoulders – What would you tell him?”
“I…don’t know. What…could he do? What would you tell him?”