Teaching is hard! Many of you know this, the countless hours pre-planning classes, evaluating students, communicating with parents and then when you are crazy enough to decide to run your own business, the layers of work on top of this can drown you…but this isn’t the hard part.
One of the hardest parts of teaching is saying goodbye to students. While goodbye isn’t always forever, there are many times after that last class you won’t ever see them again. As a teacher, this doesn’t mean you stop thinking about them.
Across numerous 30, 45 minute or 1 hour classes in a week you can be teaching over 100 students and in each one of those classes you have taken the time to get to know your students; understand their personalities, learned their likes and dislikes and have built a bond with your student and their carers. In just two terms of classes a teacher will learn a lot about your child. They will encourage them to develop skills not only in dance but skills that can help them outside of class.
As time passes and your child continues in classes the bond between the student and teacher continues to grow. We learn exactly how to encourage them in the right way to see their best improvement, we share in their successes when they finally master the complex steps and we support them on the days when outside of class isn’t going well.
So when it is time to say goodbye it is tough. As always, you want to support your wonderful students. They may have decided to try a new activity, are moving away from the area or have too many commitments and something has to be dropped. As your child’s teacher we are going to support your child with the change, but on the inside our hearts are breaking a little at the thought of not seeing your child continue to grow into the fabulous adult we know they will become. Teachers are the best actors and are very good at hiding the heartbreak on the inside.
A little piece of our heart goes into each student we teach and so if you ever see your dance teacher, sports coach or music teacher out of their natural habitat and they are looking a little worn down, remember that it’s hard work giving little bits of your heart away to your students and seeing them walk away with them.
It can wear you down at times, but there is absolutely nothing I would change about being a teacher that invests a little bit of myself into every student that steps into my class. Just as I carry my students around with me, I know I have given my students a bit of me to carry with them into their future.