You may say this post is one of self-delusion. Doesn’t everyone want to be 29 or 34 forever?
But since turning 50 (today!) is no delusion, I’ve decided to ask you all for help in listing all the advantages a teacher turning 50 has. Here’s what I’ve come up with so far. Lets see how many we can get on this list!
1) My boys are young adults now.
Not that they don’t need some “Mommy Time” too (not to mention food and laundry) but its nothing like when they needed to be picked up from nursery school EXACTLY on time. If I want to stay, on the spur of the moment, in the English room at the end of the day and finish something up, I can.
2) I really care a lot less what people think. I recently joined the local gym, which is near my house and gives a better deal than the private places I used to go to. I don’t mind that the many teachers from my school who also go there (and I’ve met a former adult student too) see that I’m a Klutz.
3) HUGE PERK , only for Israeli teachers in the national school system (as far as I know!): 2 “age hours”. That means that instead of a full time position being 24 proper teaching hours, it will now be only 22 hours!!! I will actually be working 24 hours next year too (my co-teacher just had a baby!!!) but will be paid extra for those two hours. Hmmm, I think there will be two more “age hours” when I turn 55!!
4) Experience – you would think that I would put that first, wouldn’t you?
But that’s a tricky one. On one hand, every day, EVERY LESSON, gives me more “experience points (remember the board game “Careers”?). On the other hand, every year brings new challenges. Changes in the curriculum is only part of it. I’m a special-ed teacher. There is a strong push toward mainstreaming in this country. That means that the percentage of students with multiple disabilities,emotional difficulties, illnesses or broken homes rises every year. Its not getting easier.
5) I used my fiftieth birthday shamelessly as part of my campaign to get permission to go the recent IATEFL conference in Liverpool.
I milked it for all it was worth! It worked!
Bring on the ideas – how long will this list get?
Note from two days later:
Thought of another one!
I’ve always had trouble remembering names. The older I get the less odd it seems!
Check out the suggestions coming in the comment section!