I am about to embark on my 17th year of teaching middle school. We'll, the next five days are inservice first. Yes, five. I've got a few more wrinkles, a few (ahem) less hairs, but I've never been more experienced. I was talking with a teacher friend who has the same amount of years who said, "I've never been better at my job while at the same time I've never been farther away from being 13." We talked about how we are at a point in our careers where we are teaching kids who:
Weren't even born on September 11th, 2001
Who have always had the Internet
Who have never used a VCR
Who have never had to wait to hear their favorite song
Who have never pushed "Play" and "Record" at the same time
Who have never had a landline phone
Who have always had Netflix available...
...and the list can go on and on.
However, we came to the conclusion that even though they are exposed to more, a 13 year old today still goes through the same emotions, social awkwardness, and self-discovery today as we did when we were 13. Every generation will say, "kids aren't the same as when I was that age." Nope, but the true core of being a kid at any age, is. That's why being a teacher keeps you young at heart. Even though we've maybe taught a specific grade level for years and years and might have lost some of the novelty of the "newness" of it all, it is good to remember that it is still brand new to our students.
Have a great year!
Matt @ Surviving Social Studies