I started teaching grade 5 online for the Toronto District School Board on September 24th, 2020. This is the first week I’ve really felt like my head was above water (It’s January 23, 2021). I have been a teacher for over 20 years and this is the first time I have taught grade 5 (besides covering a short leave a decade ago). I love teaching online and it’s probably the hardest I have worked in my career.
In case you are feeling like you are not above water yet this school year, I want to encourage you that it is coming. Here is a brief look at the stages I went through to this point.
- Not responding to texts, emails, messages. Annoyed people would email me – especially forwards! Who has time for that??
- Using sticky note that says “buy tissue” to blow nose.
- Going to bed after midnight because of work.
- Feeling overwhelmed, not sure how to do everything required in life, but “keeping it together” (mostly).
- I would complain about all the work, but I don’t have time.
At Sea level
- Working until 7-8 at night.
- Responding to texts but not emails.
- Finally getting a handle on the grocery shopping. Yay tissue!
- Thinking it may be ok soon but not wanting to tempt fate.
- Only talking to people who don’t need my support.
- Finally clearing out my email inbox.
- Responding to friends.
- Finishing work on time (5-6 in the evening).
- Going to bed on time.
- Feeling I have a handle on it (and maybe having some time to complain about the fact that they sent an email saying report cards were due in 2 weeks, when they had not yet fixed the report card system, so I couldn’t start report cards yet…).