Life as a teacher

This is totally a thing. Life as a teacher is so different than any other profession. You have so much more restrictions on when you can pee, leave work, eat lunch, vacation, converse with adults, say certain things, and do anything that is not role-modelish.

Before you begin thinking of all the professions that have restrictions let me explain what I mean in a bit more detail. I know doctors and nurses can’t pee during surgery and some of those last for hours, some are so long that I have heard of doctors wearing a pee bag. If all of this is true then props to them and they win the can’t pee race. As a teacher, I have four minutes in-between classes to use the bathroom and that can only happen if I don’t need to have a private conversation with a student, change materials for the next class, re-set technology, sign progress reports for athletes, etc.

Leaving the office is a luxury most professionals take for granted. Now, let me preface this by saying that this leaving campus during the day rule is different in every school it is usually up to the principal. Since lunch is only 20 minutes, you definitely can’t leave and grab a lunch. Plus, you have to, at least in my school, monitor your students during lunch so you barely have time to pee let alone leave the building. I have had principals who did not allow leaving the building at all because they wouldn’t be able to cove multiple teachers if they were in an accident or were stuck in traffic. With this mindset, administrators inform teachers that they can’t even leave during their almost an hour planning period. Can you imagine being stuck in your office the whole day?

One of the reasons many people leave the profession of teaching is the feeling of isolation. All day long you are in a room with students directing, monitoring, and assisting students. The only time you see an adult is before school, during the 4-minute class change, and after school. If you would like to speak with an adult during these times you must make an effort to do so. Many days before and after school is a meeting, making a lesson, copying papers,  etc and in between classes is 4 minutes of getting ready for the next group, going to the bathroom and handling student behavior.

All these things explain why teachers seem to find each other and become more than just colleagues.  Now I know this is not limited to the teaching profession, as everyone likes having someone who understands what happens in their work world, but I feel like teachers need this comradery a bit more than other professions because of the red-tape and the emotional strain of the job.