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unsure & sad
Old 09-21-2006, 07:47 PM
 
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I taught one grade for 4 years. Currently in my 5th year as a teacher and I was moved to another grade level. I am in graduate school pursuing a masters degree. At least 2 times a week if not more I am so sad about work! I work late hours (like till 8PM) trying to prepare and feel "just right and ready for the followin day". The kids are great, the curriculum is fine tuned and well written though extremely demanding. I try to leave early and think i am ready but then the following day is hell!! I sob and cry but cannot pinpoint my exact frustration. I have parent support, great grade level partners, and a supportive principal. I just constantly feel unsettled once the school year gets underway. My creativity is zilch and I am always thinking about "things to do or get done" for lessons, bulletin boards, etc.

I guess what my question is, how do I know I am cut out for this job??? Work should be enjoyable however lately I think work is just more work? I feel as though my job is just that work- not a natural thing I am good at and get paid for. Does that make sense?

How many more years do I give it?? When does the daunting weight of the endless lists of things to do subside and become more manageable??? If I leave the profession, gosh what else can I do??? I hate the way I am feeling lately. So sad, any advice???


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Woah!!!!!
Old 09-22-2006, 02:33 AM
 
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I may not have the full picture, but you sound totally stressed!

Just take it one day at a time, one master's assignment at a time, and remember that you're "good enough" is probably the students' super duper!

People who set high standards for themselves (I am one of them) also have a hard time when we try to do too much. Sounded like for four years everything was fine.

So, to recap....

New grade level
Master's program
Keeping house (apartment, whatever)
Perhaps having a life (Family, friends, etc)

Cut yourself some slack and give yourself some time.
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Old 09-22-2006, 08:45 AM
 
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It sounds to me like you are trying to do too much. I was in your shoes last year. I was working all day long at school, then I'd leave to attend class at the local university two nights a week. I was also staying late on the days I wasn't oging to class. I was enjoying work very much, but I was stressed out, and that was wearing on me.

Try to trim down on your activity level at school. Realize that there is always "one more thing to do" BUT you are going to leave school so that you are rested and relaxed for the next day.

You could do what I began to do, and that was give yourself a deadline. I'd say to myself: "I'm going to get the most important things done, and don't care what else isn't done when five o'clock rolls around. I'm leaving." And I did.
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Sounds so familiar!
Old 09-22-2006, 12:50 PM
 
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I can completely understand what you are going through because I went through the same thing my very first year. I was all excited the first month then after the second month, I would cry constantly, always complaining about work to my family, doubted if it was a profession for me, stay up late to work, wake up almost every hour feeling anxious. Every waking minute my thoughts where about school, school, school!!!!!!

Let me tell you something, the stress is not worth it!!!!! I dropped so much weight, didn't eat a well-balanced diet, was sleep deprived, nerves were on edge. It was not a pretty situation! It was finally my family intervened and said, enough is enough!

They helped me with the perspective that it is NOT the only thing that was important in my life. What I would recommend you try is to break up your week according to responsibilities (ie. Monday putting up bulletin board, Thursday grading papers ), give yourself a treat once a month. For example, go out to dinner, go to the theatre, shop for a special outfit, etc.

It will give you something to look forward to and gives you other things that are important in your life. Make sure your life is well balanced. Please let us know how it works out for you! Keep your chin up! Good Luck!
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Sorry to hear it is rough right now
Old 09-22-2006, 03:19 PM
 
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Did you feel this way at your old grade level? I think you have to keep in mind that you most likely are having to create new units of study and it is like your first year again minus classroom management- and even that may be different. I think you should do everything you can to lighten your load

1. Talk with your grade level if you have not. I know that we give our new teammates all our units of study that we have written so they are not stressed.

2. Don't worry about the little things like bulletin boards. The #1 priorty is being ready to teach

3. If you have great parent support use it! Get them to do the bulletin boards, copying, cutting, and anything else they can!

4. Choose one or two things to focus on

This is my 5th year also but I had to let go last year becuase I had a baby. My teammates and I plan together weekly and get our plans done in about 45 minutes. We then share the workload of copying, writting lessons, making "things" we need. I actually think I am a better teacher now because I have let go some. I come home and spend time with my family and I am refreshed the next day. I do spend a few hours on the weekend (during naptime) getting my RW and WW focus lessons typed up. Also I do not know a teacher who ever feels "settled" MY team is two teachers who have been teach for 15+ years, myself and a 3rd year teacher...we all feel unsettled. That is the way it is I think...at least when teaching 2nd grade is my experience!

Good luck,
Jaime


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trying so hard
Old 09-22-2006, 03:32 PM
 
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It's wonderful to see that you have set such high standards for yourself. You deserve much credit for the time you put into everything. When my students get stressed about doing their best, I usually tell them, "No one is asking you to be the best -- just DO your best." I hope that idea helps you to settle down and enjoy how many things you are doing well. No one (except maybe you ) expects you to be the best at everything. And from what you said in your post, we can all tell that you are trying your best. Good luck.
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parent volunteers and student helpers
Old 09-23-2006, 09:22 AM
 
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Also, please elicit help from parent volunteers and student helpers for some of those chores that are keeping you on the job so long. You will be more relaxed and refreshed the next day. You just have to let some things slide and turn over charge of some things you can't get done to others. I am sure that even members of your family can help you with some tasks.
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Been there too...
Old 09-27-2006, 02:55 PM
 
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I think we all ask ourselves the same question, at least I know I do...but then there are days where you just feel really good about your job! I think that there are many people in different jobs or professions who deal with the same type of stress. Although, teachers tend to spend more hours at home to prepare themselves for the classroom. I agree with what everyone else has said about focusing on the important things and letting yourself accept that everything can't be done at once. What worked for me was joining exercise classes in the evenings because it prevents me from focusing on school and give me an outlet to release frustration. Try it out! You might be surprised!
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work
Old 09-27-2006, 07:01 PM
 
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I agree with the others, you sound stressed out. Try to find something to do for YOU every week. Do something not related to school or work. Excercise, like Smiles66, stated is great to relieve tension.
Break your tasks into manageable chunks. Try not to look at everything you have to do at once. Take things step by step and try to get done with work earlier. Maybe you need to set a time to stop. If you had an "appointment" to go to the gym 3 times a week at a certain time it would make things easier for you to relax some.
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