Being Thankful: A Teacher’s Perspective
By Stephenie Sivadon
Title 1 K-5th Teacher
With the negative climate that is present in the education world today, what do I, as a teacher, have to be thankful for? College students are not lining up to major in education, our Oklahoma teachers are leaving the state to find better paying positions, our state legislature does not fund or support us, the media regularly portrays us in a negative light. What do I have to be thankful for as a teacher?
I am blessed to work with children who come to me with a variety of experiences and backgrounds who teach me something everyday. These kids work hard everyday to make themselves better, even when life is tough and they have many other things on their minds. I get to see their eyes light up when they “get it.” When my students are proud of their work, or they have met a goal, or received an award for showing good character, I get the privilege of celebrating with them. I laugh when times are good, and cry with them when life is bad, hug them when they are sad, high five them when they are successful. I get to see an autistic child who does not talk to anyone, sing “You’ve Got A Friend In Me,” to a packed gym at an end of the year talent show.
I am also blessed to work with a faculty who love kids and will do anything to help them be successful in school and in life. Whether they are buying school supplies, food, clothes, shoes, or even furniture for students in need, they strive to make sure all of their needs are met. This group of educators constantly support one another, lift each other up, and help one another when necessary. They are an extraordinary group of people. They work extremely hard and do more with less on a daily basis. I am blessed to be a part of our student’s families lives for a moment in time, working with parents and grandparents to help make students successful.
I work in a district with an administration that works tirelessly for our students and teachers. Our community has continuously supported our schools by donating money so we can have the materials we need to have in our classrooms. They are our school’s biggest cheerleaders. This is the environment I have the privilege of working in everyday. What an incredible journey it is, and I am extremely grateful for it.