Teachers, We Didn’t do Everything “Right” These Past Few Months and That’s Okay

Teachers, We Didn’t do Everything “Right” These Past Few Months and That’s Okay

The school year that almost broke many teachers is officially over. Pandemic teaching was brutal. While living and working during a pandemic is difficult for everyone, teachers had especially challenging circumstances. They were teaching in their classrooms one day and told to figure out how to convert everything they do to remote learning overnight. Then they had to figure out how to balance teaching dozens of children from home while also attending to their own kids 24/7.

Teachers, we are way too hard on ourselves and we definitely don’t take enough credit for the awesome work we do.

The world was flipped upside down, and we teachers saved the day.

It’s easy to look back at the long months teaching during a pandemic and find all the many things that went wrong – the learning curve was inevitable. However, let’s focus on all the many things that went RIGHT. Though the world was flipped upside down, teachers were the ones who somehow managed to keep it on its axis for the children. We worried about the kids who didn’t “show up” on the other side of the screen. And we worried about not doing everything “right” for the ones who did. We wanted to do more for everyone and felt like we were letting our students down.

While uncertainty was the new reality, we were our students’ constant and their “normal”. While there were questions of what comes next, our kids could count on us being there through every step. Every adjusted plan, message answered, and ounce of grace granted played a vital role in caring for our kids in a whole new way. We did go above and beyond while the world was in crisis. 

We gave our all to our students while many of us also had their own kids at home.

Not only were we dealing with our kids from a distance and rocking it, but we also had to deal with our own kids at home! We all know being home with children is a full-time job itself. We woke up to kids, who immediately needed time and attention. We pre-planned distractions for them and hoped and prayed it was enough to keep them busy during Zoom sessions. In between calls, meetings, and remote classes, we were helping our own children with school work. We fetched snacks, kissed boo-boos, did laundry, hunted for supplies, made all the meals, and tried to keep everything running smoothly for our family. Our own kids sometimes had to take a back burner because the teacher portal was always filled with emails to answer and assignments to grade. 

Many of us were left feeling drained from distance learning – physically, and emotionally – like we failed both our students and our own families because there just wasn’t enough to go around. We ran a race every single day and often felt guilty that we weren’t doing enough.

We may not have done everything “right”, but when put in a nearly impossible situation, we somehow made it through. In the middle of an entire global pandemic, we kept it together and finished the school year. We found a way to give our students the best experience possible, as we always do.

Teachers, you can’t feel guilty over not doing everything perfectly all the time. Remember the million tasks you checked off, and how resilient you were during this pandemic. You had more balls in the air than hands to catch them, yet your juggling game remailed strong. If you accidentally dropped a ball, you picked it back up and kept on rolling. 

Teachers, you didn’t fail anyone. You were actually even more awesome than usual.


Teachers, We Didn’t do Everything “Right” These Past Few Months and That’s Okay

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Whitney Ballard is a writer and teacher from small town Alabama. She owns the Trains and Tantrums blog, https://trainsandtantrums.blog/. Whitney went from becoming a mom at sixteen to holding a Master’s degree in Education; she writes about her journey, along with daily life, through a Christian lens on her blog. When she’s not writing, you’ll find her in the backyard with her husband, two boys, and two dogs.

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