The Happy Teacher Challenge

A couple weekends ago, my teacher friend and I engaged in a fun day of learning on a Saturday. I had to get up at 6:30 on a Saturday and had to put on a bra and makeup on my day off. I totally did not have a shot of whiskey in my coffee or a super sugary filled donut for breakfast. 

One of the break out sessions we signed up for was all about Social Emotional Learning for the educator. They sold the class like we would learn skills to feed our souls and regenerate our purpose. 

Pretty quickly, we called bullshit. 

After reading an article that stated my teacher burnout was due to my low social emotional intelligence, I pretty much mentally checked out.  

At the end of the session, we were handed a gorgeous color copy (you know you’re a teacher when a piece of paper has more value solely due to it being printed in color) of The 30 Day Happy Teacher Challenge. 

We looked at each other like, “Holy shit, yes!” 

We both need more happiness in our lives in regards to our school year, so we were so down for the challenge. 

That is, until we actually read the “challenges”. 

Double lame with some “fuck that” sprinkled on top is what this challenge consisted of. 

Most of the “challenges” are things I do every single day, because they are what good teachers, who have a solid pedagogy, do. And, some of them, like assigning an exit ticket (one or two questions to gauge understanding) depress the ever-loving crap out of me a lot of the time.  

When we saw, “Happy Teacher Challenge”, we both thought it had to involve alcohol, days off, and lots of chocolate. Not one of those things are included. 

For shame.

Here’s the challenge:


I blurred out the copyright name, because I don’t want to shame this teacher. I’m sure they meant well, but, well, just, no. 

So, after being utterly disappointed and underwhelmed, I decided to make my own “Happy Teacher Challenge”. 

In case there are any fuddy-duddies reading this, or people who have not one ounce of humor, know this is satire. It’s not literal. 

I’m not fancy and also have way too much shit to do, so I didn’t make this into a pretty calendar, so you get a list. Quityerbitchin. 

1. Pull a trusted colleague aside to whisper all of those ‘fucks’ to that you have been holding in.

2. Have your students partner up and organize a section of your room. Call it OCD: Beginner’s Edition, or just Life Skills.
3. Finally strike up a conversation with the idiot who keeps jamming the copier and leaving it for someone else to deal with. Getting how you feel off your chest first thing in the morning will make you feel ready to tackle a day of holding in how you feel all over again.

4. Spend your entire prep period sending teacher memes to your teacher friends. These might be especially apropos:


Michael Scott knows! 

5. Take a short walk down to the vending machine in the teacher’s lounge for a much-needed soda during lunch. When everything but Dasani water is sold out, take another short walk to your car where you have a nice, little scream.
6. Calm yer tits, paper. Organize the stacks of papers on your desk labeled “to be graded” by sweeping them into the garbage can. They’ll just end up crumpled around a moldy bag of apples in the back of their desk anyway, so…

7. Think of a student who is always well behaved and really smart. Pick them to lead your math lesson for a day.

8. Fill out a staff appreciation for your fellow teacher in arms. Luckily you have a really good one this time: “Mr. Walton is a real star for cleaning the word, ‘sex’ off of the boys’ bathroom wall during his only break last Tuesday”.

9. Buy this shirt for yourself (and wear it to school immediately upon receiving it):zyrwrgt

Buy here

10. Take an Ambien and a nap under your desk during lunch.

11. Ask your students to draw a portrait of you, and laugh all the way to the wine aisle at your nearest liquor store.

12.Download a fun desk planner, attempt to laminate it, and when the laminator is broken AGAIN, just buy one on Amazon.

13. Bribe your custodian with a Starbucks gift card so that they will keep providing you with those paper ass gaskets. When you share a bathroom with 20+ eight- and nine-year-olds, they make all the mental difference.

14. Make a very serious effort to smile more. Even while saying, “It goes in the turn in basket” for the nine billionth time. Bonus: your excessive smiling with creep them out.

15. Take a goofy picture with your students-it’s super cute. Just crop out the kid throwing up gang signs.

16. Do a compliment circle with your students to start your morning. Maybe they’ll notice your new Kate Spade earrings or overly-expensive Tieks that they’ll scuff after three days. 

17. It’s Life Skills day again! Provide a Swiffer duster and a push vacuum, and they will actually want to clean the room.

18. Play some Enya, add some lavender essential oil to your diffuser and transport yourself during Guided Reading. Hey, it’s better than nodding off. Calgon, take me away!

19. Drink your double espresso out of your World’s Okayest Teacher mug, and remind yourself that you are doing your very best, dammit. 

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But it here

20. Make time to sit on your fat arse at the end of day. In fact, make time to sit accompanied by a glass of wine, loaded nachos, and some Netflix. Getting up 20 times a day from the kidney table counts as exercise. Thighs of steal, man. Thighs.of.steel.

21. Bring home the contraband notes they write to each other that you find on a daily basis. Laugh over their spelling choices and sweet innocence with a glass of wine and your dwindling sanity. Math sux bols! 

22. Organize your files on your teacher computer with fun new folder names like, “Important Shit”, “Crap I Will Never Look At Again”, and “Bullshit I Have to Deal With”. 

23. Share passwords to Teachers Pay Teachers, HBO Go, Discovery Ed, Match, and Flocabulary. Sharing is caring. 

24. Encourage students to bring cupcakes for their birthdays. It’ll create positive memories for them and you won’t have to fund your cupcake habit. But, store-bought only, and remind them not to forget the Capri Sun (organic tropical punch pairs nicely with a good white cake and vanilla cream cheese frosting). 

25. Bring a bottle of wine to weekly planning with your grade level. Watch how your lesson plans are utterly transformed.

26. Download a countdown app and set the date for the next school break. Watch the seconds count down as you get closer and closer to freedom. 


Get the same app here.
27. Do you work with an overly harried colleague who needs some “chill the fuck out” time? Buy them this mug, if they have a sense of humor, it’ll make their year:


Buy it here

Don’t forget to include some mini booze bottles and a couple Xanax. Bonus: You basically own them now. 

28. Make sure you plan “Coffee/Wine Bitch Hours” with your teacher friends. These people and the moments you spend commiserating is a huge part of why you might remain sane during your career. 

29. DON’T assign an exit ticket so that you can briefly, blissfully believe your students understood what you were going on about for 40 minutes.

30. Stand at the door and give your students a high five as they leave for the day, knowing you don’t have to see them for another 18 hours.

So, what do you think of the challenge? Did I forget anything? Let me know in the comments. 

One Liners Challenge

I was nominated by Rachel’s Whims to add some of my flavor to this “One Liner” challenge. I feel like a real blogger being nominated to do cool blogging shit. I was also nominated by another blogger for another challenge, and now that I know how to tag in my posts, I will be doing that one shortly. Aren’t I so blogging-cool? Anywhoo…

Here’s the rules.

1. Write one line in the ongoing story, in italics.
2. Pass the challenge onto the next victim/Nominee.
3. Link back to your nominator.
4. Link back to Me, Waffles, if you could please, this could be very interesting.
5. Copy and paste all the previous story and add your line.

And the story goes …

It was a warm sunny day and sea was an almost transparent shade of blue.
I lay there, watching the waves lap on the shore, a drink in hand, a tear rolling down my cheek.
I stand up yelling at that boy who threw this load of sand into my eyes and my drink when he jumped over me.
I then grabbed my water gun, running fast after him, I was laughing, he was jumping over people to escape. He turned to look at me, but didn’t see the two children in front of him carrying two delicious looking ice cream cones.
As he barreled into the children, knocking the ice-cream from their grasp, I caught one of the scoops of pistachio and hurled it at his head as I fell laughing to the ground!
And what luck, his mouth was open and he gulped down the scoop, spitting nuts rapid-fire style like a rabid squirrel! And wouldn’t you know it, a squirrel leaped from a nearby tree, performing a flying maneuver worthy of the best traveling circus family, catching the nuts in his mouth in mid-air!!

It was all too fantastical and I wondered for a moment if I’d forgotten to take my medication earlier…or perhaps I took too much!

I opened my eyes with a jolt, peeled my face from the sticky plastic beach lounger, and rubbed my eyes-sun and too many mojitos make for ridiculous dreams!

I nominate babysteps22 for the challenge! Good luck, dahling!

This challenge was originally started by a super sweet blogger, wafflemethis!

Diet Schmiet

Am I the only one whose diet goes out the window the second a change in schedule happens? The other day was Field Day, and lunch was provided, lunch which consisted of sandwiches, chips, and cookies. I think there was watermelon, but I saw a mound of cookies, and nothing else mattered. Normally, the germaphobe in me would have hesitated before reaching for random cookies. Who made them? Did they wash their hands? Did their child help, with their booger germs? After carting around hot, smelly, tired, and cranky 3rd graders from activity to activity all morning, I took, and inhaled 3 cookies. I still can’t recall the flavor of these cookies, but at the moment, they could have been poop cookies for all I cared. When I’m tired and stressed, and my schedule is all out of whack, carbs and processed sugar are all my body will accept. Cabbage salad? Nope. Won’t.Open.Mouth.Can’t. 

A day after Field Day, I am still tired and stressed (I think this has nothing to do with the hot-as-balls Field Day, but more to do with end-of-year tasks that seem to never end) and I’m still making poor choices. Today, my excuse was I had to sit outside and watch a soccer game, and it was horribly humid. I also had to tell my students 387 times to stop pulling out the grass and watch the game. So, naturally I had to eat an entire avocado with my tacos (it’s the GOOD kind of fat, alright!) and half a bag of tortilla chips. I think I also ate a vanilla Tasty Kake. 

*Sigh*…I’m really sighing over here, guys. I’m feeling the reality that I will be suffering from “Thigh-Rubbage-Rash” AGAIN this summer. No thigh gap in sight with this chick. I also still have arm-flappage in a major way. I guess I can use them as fans. So…that’s a positive. 

Tomorrow is a new day, but everyone knows diets can’t start on Thursdays, so I’ll have to eat poorly until Monday (official diet start day). Besides, the end-of-year happy hour will be happening after the last day on Friday, and you know an immense amount of liquid calories will be consumed. 

Maybe I’ll sweat out all of my poor choices at hot yoga tomorrow? Maybe! 

Try Again 

This is my second post of the day, but only because I had to try downward dog again after speaking to a friend about what I was doing wrong in my previous picture. She said to lean into my hands more, and yes, that does sound like what the instructor said last week, but I was too busy trying not to pass out to pay any attention to her. 

I tried to lean forward into my hands more, while raising my ass into the air further. My wrists still seem so weak, but I felt like what I was doing seemed more accurate. I will know more when I go to class on Thursday. 

Along with working on my flexibility, I am also trying to strengthen my core. I am starting the plank challenge over, as it seemed, we, as teachers, don’t have the time before and after school to stay consistent with doing our planks everyday. So, here I am starting at the beginning with a 20 second plank, because, shit yes, that’s nothing. 

Here we go! 

  
I’m not sure, but it looks better? As avid fans can see, this time I’m watching Girls (such a great scene to pause, at least it’s not Hannah’s bewbs). 

  
What you can see here is that my belly looks über unflattering in this position. What you can’t see is that, after 10 seconds, I was shaking like a leaf.