Sunday, April 18, 2010

when being a teacher takes over your life

They say it starts early. They say it starts with tiny little things that you don't even notice. They say you don't realize it until you have PTSD.

Well today I kinda realized it when I made myself a sticker chart to help with my workout routine. I figured if behavior contracts work for kids, they might work for modifying my lack of motivation to hit the gym. So I opened Excel, wrote up a chart with attainable goals and a self selected reward, printed off a week, and put it on the fridge.

It's official.

Teaching is leaking into my life.

I started to notice it last Christmas. My giant extended family was all together and we couldn't get everyone quiet for grace and a toast. My natural instinct was, of course, to shout "ONE TWO THREE EYES ON ME!" And I was actually a little annoyed when everyone didn't shout back "ONE TWO EYES ON YOU!"

The next time I noticed it was when I was telling my husband something I felt we had to do. "It's not a choice" I chimed. He gave me the don't pull your teacher voodoo on me look.

One time I was talking to a friend who is sorta known for having a short attention span, and I kept asking her to repeat everything back to me to make sure she was retaining everything I said over the phone. Another time I wrote her a list of my key points.

So tonight, as I gave myself a smiley face for doing my pushups and sit ups and skipping dessert, I realized that it has already started. Before I even had the chance to get my own classroom, teaching is leaking into my entire life.

But my smiley face is so fun. I have a whole day of smiley faces. Tomorrow working out will be easier, now that I know I'll get a smiley face on a piece of paper. Really, it will!

After all, when kids consistently make really awful choices, doesn't a smiley face on a piece of paper fix their behavior?


  1. i've been having trouble sticking to my workout routine. i am SO stealing this! and since i teach jr. high, my smiley face stickers are all text speak. how fun!

  2. I'm glad you like the idea! I ended up just drawing in my smiley faces with marker, and I used purple (my favorite) for the good smiles and red for the misses to draw an X. It was really way more effective than I expected.

    Now if I start singing the clean up song when I vacuum I'm really gonna be worried...

  3. I laughed out loud when you said you have begun to realize you use your "teacher talk" on your husband. It's so true! I do it all of the time and he HATES it!

  4. I just checked out your blog after clicking on the link at Mr. D's teachforever blog and I love it! Teaching has completely taken over my life too--I find myself saying "These are your choices" constantly to adults, and my friends are always saying, "Don't teacher me!" I'm a new teacher too and will definitely be reading more of your blog in the future!

  5. @ Miss Mac: our poor husbands :P

    @ Miss G: Glad you like the blog! I am new to the blogging world but it's been fun so far.

  6. I found your blog from Mr. D's blog too! My boyfriend is constantly telling me that I am "using my teacher voice" on him. :-)