I don’t think there’s a day that goes by where I don’t question if I’ve made a huge mistake in choosing to pursue education and teaching as a career. As I’ve said before, the stakes are high, the stress is abundant, and the rest is terribly lacking. At the beginning of this class, I was highly skeptical at times if I was making the right decision… and that’s difficult to admit. Teaching is something I’ve always loved. I love learning, I love kids, and I love sharing what I’m passionate about. It made sense to be a teacher; it encapsulates everything that’s important to me.
So why the hesitation, why the fears and doubts? At one point or another, I have to acknowledge that, as a teacher, I am not in control of a lot of things. I can’t control the day my kids are having, I can’t control the support of my administration, I can’t control the kind of funding my program has, and I certainly can’t control the willingness of my community to respond to the engagement of my classroom. There’s a certain level of power and resources at my disposal that can be used to influence these factors, but ultimately after I play my hand, there’s not much more I can do. That’s… daunting, to say the least.
In the Art Ed program, and especially over this past semester, I’ve seen so much passion and willpower from my cohort to institute meaningful curriculum, experiences, and learning opportunities for our students. In a nutshell, we want to change the world, and I believe we can, but certainly not alone. It takes support, encouragement, and the ceaseless endeavors of entire communities to make this sort of change happen. Trying to navigate that, pooling resources until a collective effort can be brought to fruition, seems impossible sometimes. It certainly did at the beginning of the semester. However, if there is one major take away I’ve gained from the experiences of this class… it’s that we’re never really alone in this aspiration. I’ve had the opportunity to engage with many different facets of the community; teachers, local artists, community collectives, all with the same drive to create a positive impact on our world. So it’s not really about being in control, or making things happen exactly to plan, it’s about engaging in a collective to make something bigger than yourself.
And for some added fun… check out my Digital Teaching Philosophy!