Tuesday, November 18, 2014

A (Real) Teacher

I wasn't sure what I was going to write about today because, if I'm being honest, I haven't been writing true "slices." But today, I think I have a slice for you. 

I said something that I shouldn't have said. 

The big buzz around the English Department this week is the upcoming NCTE convention in Washington DC. I spied the program on a teacher's desk and as I was flipping through it, I offhandedly remarked "Oh, I used to go every year when I was a real teacher." 

As the words left my mouth, I knew I wasn't being fair--to myself or to other instructional paraprofessionals. I mean, what is a "real" teacher? It's more than just degrees and certifications. Instructional paraprofessionals know their subject matter. They are skilled at helping kids turn the lightbulb on. They are tasked with the difficult challenge of working with kids who "don't get it." 

So, this is my lesson for today: own my professionalism. I am absolutely a "real" teacher. I have always been and always will be one. 

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