To Teach or Not to Teach?

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When I was in kindergarten, I wanted to teach kindergarten.

When I was in grade school, I wanted to teach grade school.

When I was in middle school–and I hated middle school…I wanted to teach middle school.

When I was in high school, I wanted to teach high school.

And then I didn’t. I wanted to write. I wanted to be a journalist. I was going to study journalism at Bradley.

And then I was about to start college…and I wanted to teach high school, again. I started at Bradley with a major in English and a minor in Education.

Then, to everyone’s shock and amusement, when I was in college, I wanted to teach at a college. And after a few observations…and waking up at 5:30 in the morning to drive to “fucking Brimfield,” I realized that teaching may not be for me.

So I dropped my Education minor (second semester of junior year), and pursued a solo degree in English. I wrote my undergraduate senior project paper (“What else can you do with an English degree?”) on becoming a liquor sales woman. Yeah, I got an A. I’d like to thank a certain teacher who ROCKED…and loved my “oh-so-hard-work”. Side note: Prescott, please tell me that you knew it was all a bunch of BS…sort of.

So after graduation in 2005 (with the words “Need a job” boldly masking taped on the top of my cap), I tried to get into liquor sales. Or event planning. Or marketing. Or management. Or editing. Or non-profit organizations. Or anything that looked remotely interesting and didn’t require a heck of a lot of job experience.

Finally, I was offered a position as a home decorator for JC Penney… but I had to turn it down due to an overwhelming number of moving violations

In October of 2005, I got a second job (in addition to bar-tending for my parents) working retail at New York & Company. A year later, I landed a gig as a catering manager at a Christian college.

After almost three years of working for the college, I realized that I was never going to stop spraining my ankle. The physical demands were becoming too much and I needed to reconsider my career options. Teaching had always been a dream of mine, and I finally felt that I had the patience and maturity to teach high school English.

Or so I thought.

Straight A’s in grad school. High marks on all of my observations pre-student teaching.

But then came student teaching. A post all its own, student teaching was nothing like I expected. By far, the hardest thing I have ever done in my entire life, I realized that I did not truly want to teach high school English. I loved reading and writing, and wanted to share my knowledge and passion… but I wanted to share it with people who cared. Not teenagers who barely endured my ranting and raving about how great Mark Twain was.

So I started looking at other options. In the meantime, I needed something to pay the bills. I found a job working for a learning center, where I was working with students in a very different environment than I was used to. It was a little crazy and a little fun. Through this position, I was able to stumble into a copywriter position with a small marketing company. Dream. Job. Until they laid everyone off, of course.

After six months of unemployment, I’m back at the learning center. I love the kids, but I still don’t know if this is the right path for me. Do I want to teach forever? It’s June; I’m sniffling, sneezing, and coughing my lungs up from something that I caught from one of my many nose-pickers. *sigh*

Dear corporate world, please hire me.

 

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