Thursday, August 13, 2015

Time Flies When You're...Teaching!

Every time somebody asks me how I arrived at teaching English as a foreign language in China, I think back to the interview I was privileged to have at a teacher recruitment fair. It does not seem that long ago really. In reality, it was around five years ago. What that means is that I am approaching my sixth year of teaching. What that also means is that I have passed the peak times I could have left the teaching profession.

Am I proud of this? Sure! What I know now is that the minutes, days, and years go by quickly. It doesn't feel like it's been that long. Meanwhile, those of you who have been in the game ten years or more shake your head with a "You have no idea" look on your face. I know. This all connects to something Sir Ken Robinson says. If time seems to go by fast when you're doing something and you hardly check the time, you must enjoy it. If time drags and you find yourself looking at the clock every few minutes, there is probably a lack of passion or motivation. Now that was a paraphrase, but you get the idea. I rarely catch myself looking at my watch (or phone) during the day. So many times I wish I had more than forty minutes for a class, more than four times a week, with my students.

I want to spend quality time with the students.

Learning. Together. Pushing. Encouraging. Challenging. Growing. Molding. Loving.

One of the best ways to do this has been etched in my mind even deeper upon seeing a quote from Don Wettrick, author of Pure Genius. It was a quote from his dad that says...
Think about that for a minute. It makes perfect sense. Teaching is fun because of the innovative ways we can guide students to go beyond the standards.

I leave in less than two weeks to return to China, and I am excited!! To be honest, I've actually been counting down the days until the first day of school for the upcoming year. My students have shared the same sentiment with me several times this summer.