I can guess at what I am teaching next year; I think I can even say that I can make an educated, logical assumption regarding my five classes.
If everything is similar to the last two years, I will have four classes of sophomores. I am thinking I will have a dual enrollment class.
Woo hoo for me!
I’m actually thrilled with this possible schedule.
The only problem is that I’m still in the “possible” range.
However, I decided today that I was not going to let that hold me back anymore. I am pretty confident in what I am teaching; therefore, I should act like [hopefully] I will be teaching those courses.
Therefore, by the end of last week, I created my syllabus. By Monday, I was printing supplementary materials. By Tuesday, I was updating my lesson plan book. Today, I started photocopying.
I have about four feet of supplementary material already photocopied. I am not exaggerating. Four feet.
This includes my syllabus; information on the literal, inferential, and thematic tiers of reading and writing; poetry; essays; editing paragraphs; research writing material.
The list continues.
I spend the summer planning. Yeah, I’m going to be hiking and travelling a lot this summer. I will also be writing, reading, and sleeping and sleeping and sleeping some more. I will be coloring in my coloring books. I will be writing.
Did I already write that? Yup. I’m going to write and write and write some more as well.
But, in the quiet moments between each activity, I am going to work. I am going to design activities and lesson plans. I am going to set up work so that when next year hits and I am staring at the world with an expression of stupid exhaustion, I won’t have to think too hard about what I wanted to do. The work will be done.
But, Graceless, what if you’re wrong? What if all your guesses turn into a whole lot of nothing.
I’ll admit it, I’ll be miserable. I’ll probably be furious with myself for not being patient. But, then, I’ll have to do nothing more than get over it. I’ll have to push forward because no matter how many temper tantrums I will be throwing in my mind, the school year and the students will still be approaching.
Worse comes to worse, it all ends up in the recycling bin (Dear God, please don’t let that happen). I would see what I could resurrect, use in the real schedule that will be given to me in August. I would pass on the rest to the teacher inheriting my whatever class I am not teaching and hope that he/she can use the material.
Until I know what will happen, though, I am going to plan and prepare and work. I did this before when I created my website. I have done this so many years in the past and gave myself just enough emotional and intellectual wiggle room to get me through the long winter months and longer spring months that destroy my ability to sleep which destroys my humanity.
Nothing in life is certain. I have learned that the hard way. I have seen it through friends and family pushing themselves past terrible grief when “life happened” and became seven stages of Hell.
However, for right now, I am certain about four feet worth of photocopying. I am certain that I have books I will be teaching that I love and will love teaching, even if it doesn’t happen next year (please, God, let it be next year).
This summer, I want to take a trip to DC, walk through the hallowed halls of the National Gallery of Art. I want to sit in front of the paintings and just stare, just absorb the splotches of color and the stories they tell. I want to take a friend of mine who uses art as a means of teaching literary analysis. She isn’t certain about what she is teaching, either.
But I am going to refuse to let the insecurity destroy her as much as I refuse to let my own sense of professional insecurity to gnaw at the back of my brain and ruin everything I have created for myself, for the spine I finally built up within myself .
I am ready for this summer.
I am ready for next year.
I am ready to enjoy the summer thoroughly before I am ready to start next year.
But let the next year come. I pray I will have the schedule I think I might have. If not…come Hell or high water, I am going to have a lot of fun.
And cause a lot of mischief along the way.