Basketball Games and Soapboxes



As a teacher, we really, REALLY have to rely on the “little moments”…

You know.

Those few and far between flashes of RESPECT or kindness or awesomeness or just general hilarity that pop out of students unexpectedly. They’re rare, trust me…but they make the job worth every second of after-hours grading, tutoring, professional development, etc. etc.


I went to some of my boys’ basketball games last week and let me tell you…I didn’t understand a goddamn thing. What are all those fouls? Why are there so many different point opportunities? Does everyone HAVE to be silent during free throws? Anyway. The point is, I was there. In my teacher outfit, sitting alone like a lonely loner. With my lunchbox. Clapping when everyone else clapped. FREAKING OUT when my kid’s nose started bleeding and literally holding myself back so that I wouldn’t hand him a tissue and embarrass him. It was terrible…I was starving and bored and I just wanted to go home and they lost…badddd. But, but, but–it was all worth it when ONE of the boys said, “Thanks for coming, Miss” before he left, head hanging. And it was worth it when his mom came up and shook my hand and told me she’d heard I published a novel! I went home smiling, excited to teach the next day.

It’s strange…to hear and see so many negative things from students/fellow teachers/admin/parents every day but to still love the job so much after a simple THANK YOU makes your day…isn’t that crazy?!

Then there are times like today. Today I got up on a soapbox of no return. I wrote a student a referral for a comment he made to a female student that was definitely sexual harassment… I was so disappointed and angry. I said, “You know, you should really show some self-respect. You can’t respect others until you respect yourself.” And it was just so preachy and chilly and pretentiously thrown out of my mouth like a million little daggers and I hated it right after it came out. I meant it…but I knew he didn’t understand it, and I hated that. He’ll understand it one day…he might not remember me saying it, but hopefully he’ll understand it.


I’m not sure what this blog is really about. Teaching, obviously. Loving/hating the job but ultimately love blinding out the hate. Perhaps most importantly, the Ryan Gosling teacher love memes that have been floating around the internet for years. Take from it what you will. But definitely treasure those little moments–hold onto the good memories, try to let go of the others.

7 responses »

  1. Sometimes all it takes is a little light in the distance to know you’re going the right way down the tunnel. Oh and Ryan Gosling’s smile helps too.

  2. Alysha, I could never do what you do. I know that I do not have the patience or the drive to teach a classroom full of kids. Teaching is truly a calling and your kids are blessed that you answered and are there for them day in and out. I still keep in touch with some of my high school teachers; you are definitely making a difference!

  3. A friend of mine was once again, “Why on earth would you become a teacher?”
    His response? “Because it is the noble thing to do.”

    Keep doing what is noble and right and good. And cherish those little blessings that come.

  4. What a find: I just read your latest blog entry and enjoyed it immensely. Teaching is simply the greatest profession there is, and I am grateful that you are a teacher inspiring young lives. We are so lucky to wield such influence. What a wonderful and unique journey we in the profession experience. Keep teaching, writing and inspiring. We all benefit from your expertise. Thank you.

  5. Congratulations on getting your novel published! What a great story, it was always a treat when a teacher would show up at a school function outside of school. Of course we would tease them the next day if they happened to be a single teacher with a girlfriend/boyfriend but regardless, we always enjoyed it because we knew they cared. Thank you for being one of those awesome teachers who pummels through the day trying to get through to kids that actions are just as important as knowledge! πŸ™‚

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