Today's guest blog is an acceptance speech given a few nights ago, written by Stephanie Hulbert, Teacher of the Year for the Sidney Central School District, in Sidney, N.Y.
One of my favorite things about teaching at the middle school level is the reaction I get from others when asked what I do. When I share that I'm a teacher, my new acquaintances often comment on how fantastic that is. Then, when asked what I teach, and I answer as I have through the years...6th, 7th or 8th grade English...the conversation ends with my same new acquaintances looking sad for me, seeing as how I obviously ended up drawing the short straw, and noting that my days must be...interesting.
Yes. Yes, they are interesting. Our classes of tweens and newly-turned teens are full of energy and excitement. Of course, the excitement is not always related to academics. The middle school years are ones filled with emotions. These emotions are often pertaining to anything from the thrill of a new relationship to grief at the thought that last year's friend is not, in fact, this year's friend.