The Greatest English Teacher Ever

I enjoyed contributing this guest post to the PCTELA blog. PA (and nearby teachers), come to the PCTELA conference in PIttsburgh in October: It’s a great conference for a good price, and this year, Stephen Choboski (The Perks of Being a Wallflower) and Jay Asher (Thirteen Reasons Why) will be there.


I am not the greatest English teacher ever.

I take forever and a day to grade and return student writing assignments. I’m too sensitive, and I take it personally when students aren’t interested in a lesson. I spread myself thin between teaching, coaching the swim team, and trying to keep up with my own reading and writing, not to mention finding time to spend with my wife or to clean the house. When I don’t get enough sleep, it’s easy for me to growl at students for minor infractions. My mind never fails to spin with innovative and engaging ideas, but the time to implement them seems to shrink more and more each year.

It was long past dark when I got home from practice one night this past January. A variety of events had teamed up to earn a “one of those days” label: a lackluster discussion in Period…

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