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This Phoenix Speaks

Seven years in the making, my first published book, This Phoenix Speaks , is now a reality. The tireless and tiring work invested to ma...

teacher prep

Being a teacher holds a world of responsibility. Not only do I need to show up, but I must show up prepared. That preparation takes time, effort, and ingenuity. Prep time is precious too. If someone interrupts my rhythm of thought, I can lose my whole idea. Is anyone else like that? It's as if I never even had the brilliant idea if it can fly out of my head that easily!

Even still, preparation isn't just the materials or content you're imparting to young minds either. You have to come prepared to get real. Teaching junior high and high schoolers takes grit and truth, or those kids will eat you alive. Your heart isn't safe either. They can get so funny and interesting that you connect with their writing when they share parts of themselves. You begin to wish every good thing for their futures as if they were part of your family—almost but not quite.

Another way teachers have to be prepared is knowing how to help students if/when they are having a hard time. You have to know what to say, who to ask for support, and, most of all, not make things worse by trying to help.

I'm grateful for having the responsibility of being prepared to teach. The fine young men and women who I have been able to guide thus far have taught me many things and enriched my life immeasurably.

Today, I feel the weight of my responsibility, but I wouldn't trade it for anything.


  1. I am so thankful that you have the energy and commitment to teach teenagers. They can be hard to reach sometimes, but you don't give up. Thanks for being a teacher that strives to make a difference.

  2. This really made me think about all the different ways I have to prepare to teach my students every day. Thoughtful slice!

  3. I love this look into your life. People who teach middle and highschool kids are on another level of existence to me. The amount of time and effort and vulnerability involved is enough to make most people pale. The fact that you take it head on and exceed at it is truly remarkable. Rock on, girl.

    Here's my slice for the day: http://joolimammoth.blogspot.com/2017/03/polite-society-is-boring.html

  4. It is a weight we carry. I'm in a K-8 setting now, and have a front row seat to watching our Jr. High teachers in action with these students who are ready to share! It is amazing work, that is for sure.


  5. Being prepared is a gooood feeling!

  6. I once worked with a special education teacher at a middle school who did not prepare. He walked in and randomly gave assignments. He didn't keep a grade book and when it came time for report cards he'd decide on the fly what grade to give students. It drove me insane! I wound up preparing lessons, making sure we had supplies, and keeping grades. As a 23-year-old paraprofessional (or whatever aides are called these days). I appreciate the time, energy, and commitment it takes to be prepared for the education and the personal challenges you face regularly.


Your comments are appreciated!