Elissa Good Smith was the teacher speaker at this year’s Summer Institute in Philadelphia, PA. Below is her speech as prepared.
I’m tired. I’m the kind of tired that is born from having two small children, plus a mountain of papers to grade and lesson plans to create for my six daily preps, the kind of tired that sneaks up on you after spending a decade in a classroom teaching. I’m thinking maybe teaching is overrated. Surely my favorite teachers never felt this way; they never had moments where they sat at their desk, closed their eyes, and prayed for the weekend, did they? My prayer was interrupted by a reminder email about a faculty meeting. I’m sure I rolled my eyes. I’m also sure I put on a smile as I begrudgingly walked down the hall to the auditorium to watch a video courtesy of our new principal. I found a seat next to colleagues, frustrated that the lights were turned down, so I couldn’t even sneak a peek at my cell phone without being noticed.