First year teacher, that’s what I’m labeled. It seems to be a terrifying phrase because every time I mention it, I get responses like ‘hang in there’ , ’just focus on surviving’ and ‘next year will be better’. Straight out of college I entered a world of seasoned educators, interviews, staff meetings, and more emails than I could keep up with. Among all the chaos I felt completely overwhelmed and underprepared. But there’s also an uncontainable excitement welling up inside of me because I’ve finally reached my goal. Years of being a student, preparing myself for the role to change.
The transition from student to teacher isn’t an easy one. Suddenly, I’m influencing more than just myself. There aren’t any teachers hanging over my shoulder, molding my musical knowledge and talent. Instead I have hundreds of little faces staring up at me, eagerly awaiting my next activity. Thrown in the spotlight, grasping at any lessons or tips I can remember and wondering where I threw that theory textbook from freshman year. We learn folk dances, listen to Vivaldi, do the hand jive to Greig, use our voices like firecrackers, have rhythm conversations with puppets, play song name charades, and shake the rust out of our instruments. And after the whirlwind of it all, I go home and fall on my bed for a very long nap.
Under the piles of papers, hoards of emails, strict deadlines, or the pressure of performance it’s easy to forget to step back and remember why we chose to be musicians in the first place. However you express your love for music, remember that our works of art are really meant to be works of heart. No, this year I’m not preparing for juries, I’m preparing the next generation of musical minds, and I couldn’t be more excited.
K-8 General Music, Band, & Choir at Honey Creek Community School
Eastern Michigan University, Bachelor in Music Education