Obsessed?

Discussion in 'General Education Archives' started by AngelaS, Sep 28, 2002.

?

How many hours a week of your own time do you spend on schoolwork?

  1. 0-1

    0 vote(s)
    0.0%
  2. 2-4

    1 vote(s)
    6.7%
  3. 5-8

    2 vote(s)
    13.3%
  4. 9-12

    3 vote(s)
    20.0%
  5. 13-15

    5 vote(s)
    33.3%
  6. More than 15

    4 vote(s)
    26.7%
Multiple votes are allowed.
  1. AngelaS

    AngelaS Cohort

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    Sep 28, 2002

    Over and over again on this site, I have read people's advice to new teachers- "Make sure you take some time for yourself, because teaching will take over your life if you let it".

    I was always able to complete my work in the 35 hours a week I get paid for. Then I moved up 4 grade levels, and I could probably get everything done in a 40 hour week. Not unreasonable.

    The problem is, I stay late even when my materials and lesson plans are ready- organizing, trading ideas with other teachers, making games, trying new seating arrangements. I generally work 7:20-4:00. Then I come home, everything completed, and I come to this website and read and post. Then I start doing Internet searches for new flashcards, worksheets, activities, and lesson ideas, or I type things up myself.

    Teaching is all I think about, from first thing in the morning to what I dream about at night. Fortunately, my friends have very busy lives and are not demanding, I have no children, and my partner currently stays at home and can take care of cleaning, errands, etc. (She was formerly a teacher and is sympathetic to some degree.)

    I think I have become obsessed. But the truth is, teaching has once again become my hobby. I ENJOY surfing the net and making my classroom a great place to be in. In the evening and weekends at home, I don't feel like I'm working, I feel like this is my creative outlet. (I go crazy in the summertime and before I graduated from college- I used to paint, write poetry, make crafts, anything).

    I am truly enjoying myself, but I can't help but wonder if I am going overboard. Even if its by choice, I don't have a life! What do you all to curb this instinct, or can you not relate? Should I try to set some time limits for myself? (I have- didn't stick to it because after the time was up, I was just laying there watching TV and eating chips! So why stop?).

    Then again, your answers could be a little biased... after all, you, too, are spending your free time at teacher sites! :) Thank you!
     
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  3. Upsadaisy

    Upsadaisy Moderator

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    Sep 28, 2002

    Ha ha. Definitely biased. I'm with you. Teaching is my hobby. I love the planning, searching for resources, sharing ideas. I love trying new things, am obsessed with children's literature, love my classroom ...... To me it is just plain fun!!! Of course, I am lucky. I work with very supportive teachers in a small environment. The head of school and assistant constantly affirm our efforts, remarking positively on every little thing, encourage us to take care of ourselves, assist in all ways possible. They are truly family.
     
  4. Amanda

    Amanda Administrator Staff Member

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    Sep 28, 2002

    Should I count all the hours I spend working on the website? As if one job wasn't enough, I turned teaching into two!! I'm like Upsadaisy... this is what I love to do. The kids are everything though... I tried working on the website without teaching one year and I didn't like it.
     
  5. Margo

    Margo Devotee

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    Sep 28, 2002

    Weekends are my time to do things around the house. But during the week, I spend most of my time doing school work. I, too, feel like it is my hobby. If I am not doing something school related (websites, reading Mailbox Magazine, and then all the work I bring home to do) I am bored. I don't feel like I am obsessed but rather like to think of myself as a good, devoted teacher. I see people leaving school right on time without a bag in their hand and I think, "How good can those teachers really be?" Don't get me wrong, there are some days when I just decide that I won't bring a thing home and it does feel good. But that doesn't happen very often. :D
     
  6. Upsadaisy

    Upsadaisy Moderator

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    Sep 28, 2002

    I have that same thought, Margo. I don't understand how they can leave empty-handed. I saw one teacher reading fiction during a planning period and I was astonished (maybe she is just a better teacher than I). The thing is, I always feel as though I can do just a bit better. There is nothing that couldn't do with some new, improved touch.

    Amanda, you are so right about the kids. Though I love all the "stuff", they are the reason. With a small class, too, it sure feels like family.
     
  7. CeCe

    CeCe Companion

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    Sep 28, 2002

    Wow! I was just thinking about this topic today and I was wondering if there is something wrong with me because I spend so much time thinking about & searching for teaching ideas, better ways to do things in the classroom, etc. And the crazy thing IS I'm not even teaching at the moment! I recently moved cross-country to another state and my husband urged me to try something "less stressful and less time-demanding". I must admit I spend so much time on school that I can't get everything done at home & I have 2 children (ages 9 & 13) that need my time & attention as well. Sometimes I get really stressed out trying to do everything & do it well! I have taken a job working in an office, which was kind of a nice change, but only for a short time. Then I found myself getting bored, restless, & missed the creative outlet teaching provides. I wanted to return to teaching this fall, but my husband talked me out of it. But when I get home from the office, I either sit down with some of my teaching resource books & read & start highlighting cool ideas or I go online & download teaching stuff. I really miss it! How does a person like me who really loves teaching keep a balance in her life so I'm not overdoing it at school & making my family feel second best? It's so easy to get caught up in teaching when you really love what you're doing!
     
  8. Guest

    Guest Guest

    Oct 1, 2002

    Don't worry- we are all still teaching long after we have exited the school. Look at me, it's 11:09 pm and I am still on this website reading your ideas. What's wrong with me? I should be in BED!
     
  9. AngelaS

    AngelaS Cohort

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    Oct 4, 2002

    It looks like I'm not alone here! I liked the comment that teaching 'is just plain fun'. I agree- the planning is, too!

    I'm curious as to why this post was read 146 times but only 7 people voted on the poll. I don't feel like I have enough data to really make any conclusions about this subject...
     
  10. Margo

    Margo Devotee

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    Oct 5, 2002

    When I try to vote on the poll, I get a message saying the action I am trying to do is invalid and that my session has expired (or something like that). Perhaps others are having the same trouble. Maybe Amanda can look into the problem and then you can get more results.
     
  11. Upsadaisy

    Upsadaisy Moderator

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    Yes, Angela, the same thing happened to me. I tried to vote and couldn't. It is a neat poll. Hope it gets fixed.
     
  12. Amanda

    Amanda Administrator Staff Member

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    Oct 5, 2002

    Okay, I think that you should be able to fix that by logging out and logging back in again. Try that and see if it works :)

    Just go to the forum index (http://atozteacherstuff.com/teacherchat/) and click on Log Out (the link is near the top). Then return to the forum index and re-login.

    Let me know if that fixes the problem.
     
  13. Shawnmarie

    Shawnmarie Rookie

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    Oct 5, 2002

    Even though I am not teaching this year, I wanted to add that when I was teaching, I did the same thing! I love teaching, and it feels odd to me that I am not in the classroom this year. I am taking time off to stay home with my baby, but when I did teach, I used to spend my free time searching for ideas, when I shopped, I would think, hey I could use that in my room, I'd dream of lessons, etc. Look at me now, I am not even teaching and I'm always on here, lol. Being with the children was wonderful, it's true, we all do really make a difference!
     
  14. Margo

    Margo Devotee

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    Oct 5, 2002

    Nope, still can't vote. I still get the same message. I have gotten this message ever since this thread opened. I isn't something that just started.
     
  15. Amanda

    Amanda Administrator Staff Member

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    Oct 6, 2002

    I found out why you are getting the 'session invalid' error... It is actually because you are using an internet provider who constantly changes your proxy (which is how the board identifies you).. AOL is one provider that does this. Maybe that is also why people also get logged out in the middle of browsing the boards. There are 2 things you can try:

    1) In your profile (click 'YOUR PROFILE' at the top of the page), choose to browse the board with cookies.
    2) When trying to vote on the poll, follow the link that is provided.
     
  16. AngelaS

    AngelaS Cohort

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    Oct 6, 2002

    Thanks Amanda :)
     
  17. Margo

    Margo Devotee

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    Oct 6, 2002

    Thanks Amanda. That advice seemed to fix the problem for me. I was, at last, able to vote.
     
  18. kpa1b2

    kpa1b2 Aficionado

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    Oct 8, 2002

    I spend most of my free time doing work for my "kids". I make it a point to spend at least 30 min. a day for ME! Not my husband, not my own children (1st & 5th graders), not making lunches, not surfing the web for ideas, but ME time, unrelated to work to any kind!
     
  19. Guest

    Guest Guest

    Oct 8, 2002

    kpa1b2 makes a good point. As much as we all seem to really love what we do, it's healthy to take some time out for ourselves to do something totally unrelated to work. It's sometimes hard to carve out this little block of time between raising a family and teaching, but important to do nonetheless. I'm trying to make time for at least 30 minutes of exercise daily. Sometimes I have to talk myself into it, but it sure helps keep my energy level up and keeps everyday stress from taking its toll, too. I also try to spend at least 10 minutes before going to sleep reading something just for enjoyment - not always one of my teacher resource books or Mailbox mags.
     
  20. Guest

    Guest Guest

    Oct 10, 2002

    I just read all of your responses and they were so motivating. I am still in college and I am interning at an elementary school right now and I do my student teaching in the spring. I just started interning at a new school where I will be for five weeks. I was at a different school for the past five weeks and I will return there in the spring to do my student teaching in that same class. I really like my teacher that I am with now. She actually talks to me and gives me ideas. She has shared past experiences of teaching. I can already tell that I will learn a lot from her and I have only been in the class with her twice. The school I am returning to for student teaching is the complete opposite. The staff is a lot older and they just seem burnt out. They complain all the time and constantly gossip about the students and other teachers. My mentor teacher is unorganized, late every day, and leaves at 3:45 when the students do. I do not want to go back because every day I came home and reconsidered why I wanted to teach because they made it seem so terrible. I just wanted to thank you all because it makes me feel better to know that there are many people who don't think of teaching as a "job". I already spend all of my free time planning lessons, finding ideas on the internet, reading books about teaching, building my class library. I really do love working with the children.
     
  21. AngelaS

    AngelaS Cohort

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    Oct 16, 2002

    I had a nightmare student teaching job too- one school was fantastic and the second was such a let-down. Interesting because the first was inner-city in an old building with no resources, and the second was middle/ upper-middle class in a brand new building! It's all in the staff and adminstration.

    The second mentor I had just didn't have 'the gift'. She was a former dental hygenist and had the ability to spark interest in young learners at about the same rate you would expect from someone whose only companionship most of the day were people who couldn't talk to her.

    I cried and complained and suffered and graduated. You'll be fine. :)
     
  22. hillsidefogo

    hillsidefogo Companion

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    Oct 19, 2002

    It's so great to read about teachers who love teaching. I really do believe that teaching is a calling. It's a profession where everyday is different, the mix of what you bring to class and what the children bring creates a new mix everyday. Teachers have the opportunity to go in so many directions and do so many creative things. I've had about 7-8 different jobs(mainly to support me through university) and none of them offer the stimulatin or excitement of teaching. I too spend many hours designing themes, centers and lessons for my students- I love it, many times I can't wait to see their faces as they discover something new. Sometimes parents ask me how I manage to cope with so many children everyday and not go crazy and i tell them how much fun it is watching the childre learn. Sure somedays are not so great but mostly I really enjoy being with the children. After school and in the evenings I'm either in my classroom or finding things for my next theme.I have found this site and a few other teaching sites great for ideas.
     

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