Yes, Even in a Pandemic, Teachers Still #LoveTeaching
submitted by Gary G. Abud, Jr.
We used to talk about teacher shortages, but now just about everybody has become a teacher in some way.
As a result, something that’s become crystal clear to many during the pandemic is just how hard the work of teaching is. Many have realized that educating their own children at home is a tough task, and that’s led to the conclusion that classroom teaching must be a herculean effort. Perhaps Shonda Rhimes put it best when she tweeted on March 16, 2020 that she had “been homeschooling a 6-year-old and 8-year-old for one hour and 11 minutes. Teachers deserve to make a billion dollars a year. Or a week.”
If you’re an educator you already knew that teaching is a labor of love—and that’s been especially true this year. Experiences such as those a global pandemic has brought can transform our lives in extraordinary ways, and they certainly have this year. Yet through all the challenges that Zoom meetings, remote teaching, and online learning presented, one thing remained steadfast: teachers still love to teach. And that’s why the #LoveTeaching Week movement began several years ago. To spotlight teachers’ love of the work they do for the students they teach—even despite all the things that making teaching difficult.
This year, more than ever before, educators, we will need to remind ourselves of our “why,” the joys that we find in our work with students, and seek out the treasures of teaching that sustain us even in the darkest hours. And so, educators everywhere are invited to join in the conversation on social media between February 14-21 using the hashtag #LoveTeaching to share with others in the celebration. “Teachers have moved mountains for their students this year for the students they care so deeply for,” says Rachael Wilcox, 2020 Missouri Teacher of the Year Finalist. Wilcox, who teaches first grade, is a lead organizer of #LoveTeaching Week, and she points out that “this year teachers have revolutionized their classrooms to online spaces, taught students in the classroom and online at the same time, and supported in-person learning while managing the safety of every child.”
This is cause for a celebration, according to Wilcox, who maintains that teachers accomplished all this “while never losing sight of what matters the most, our students.” In 2021, you can look for the #LoveTeaching Week campaign to encourage teachers to consider that by looking to our past we might actually find our way forward. You can find out more about the campaign and download resources to take part individually or with your school community at WeLoveTeaching.org
Whether you’re a parent, healthcare worker, grocery store employee, or teacher you probably don’t need to be reminded what a challenging time the past year has been. But just like everyone else who is doing their best to keep calm and carry on, let’s remember that even in a pandemic, teachers do still #LoveTeaching.
About the Author: Gary Abud, Jr.
An educational consultant and award-winning educator, Gary is the author of the children's book Science With Scarlett. He is also a double cornea transplant recipient who, since having his sight restored, was moved to use his teaching gifts to make learning fun for others. He lives with his family near Detroit. Gary is an Association of American Educators Foundation board member and the 2014 Michigan Teacher of the Year.