Closing the Teach For America Blogging Gap
Jun 26 2013


Tomorrow marks the halfway mark for Institute. I’m halfway finished with my summer, halfway done writing lesson plans, halfway done working with my collab, halfway done with getting 4 hours of sleep a night and eating dining hall food.

I’m all the way sure I’ll more than halfway miss it.

I heard someone lament once that he wished he could know when the good old days were while he was in them (I am fairly certain this was the finale of The Office, but I can’t be sure). Sometimes I feel like I can do that. Looking around my common area in my dorm right now with my closest friends at Institute writing lesson plans and freaking out just a little because 6 fays in, we’re all still a little rocky on whether we can actually do this. I’m painfully aware already of how much I will miss Institute when it’s over, how much I’ll miss my friends when half of them are hours away.

I like Institute. I don’t like waking up so early, I don’t like never feeling like I’m all the way ready for something, but I like that I feel that Institute is molding me, that I’m learning who I am as an educator and that despite the critiques that I am on my way to being transformational.

Because here’s what I’ve learned: being transformational isn’t magical. It’s work. It’s a lot of hard work. It’s staying up until 1am every night. It’s bending until you’re almost broken, it’s working your ass off for 10 kids who deserve the best, who make you want to be the best.


I’m not the best yet and I know my kids deserve better than what I can give right now. But I also know that nobody is going to work harder for them than I will, nobody is going to love them as fiercely and nobody can bring to this work the unique view that I can. Every corps member that I’ve met has an incredible life story, an incredible world view and our kids will be so lucky in the fall.

I am so lucky.

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