Social Media and Teaching

Tuesday, April 10, 2018

Images everywhere - Facebook, Instagram, Snap Chat filters ~ I can barely keep up.  We are surrounded by 'perfect' images constantly and not to mention everyone's 'highlight reel' of life.  I get it, I'm guilty of it too.

the pressures of social media and teaching

 It's no wonder you are feeling like a not so great mom, wife, daughter, teacher, friend.  But let me remind you - you are amazing, you are doing your best and you are #winning.
As a teacher that has been active on line for 10+ years I've seen so many changes and with that had lots of different emotions myself over the years when it's come to the dreaded word that I try to avoid at all cost:  COMPARISON.  Ugh, I said it, yuck!  Comparison my friends really truly is the thief of joy!  Don't get sucked up by it, don't get pulled in.
When I started my teacher website at the end of 2007 I felt pretty good about myself.  I loved having teachers sign my guest book and tell me they enjoyed my ideas.  Bahaha - if that doesn't age me... 
I started to recognize other teachers that had websites and would visit their sites to see what they were up to in their classroom.  I came away with great ideas and inspiration.  I too let them know I enjoyed their site and that was about it.
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Fast forward a handful of years and there are thousands of teachers with blogs, stores, social media - you name it.  I had a website before there was a Pinterest and pinning parties and tailwind, etc.
I was so excited when I discovered teacher blogs - that was a true game changer!  Of course I had to keep my website but also start up a blog.  I met so many great teachers and had real life meet ups and blog hops and giveaways and tons of collaboration.  
Then came facebook groups and pages, learning how to do facebook lives, instagram stories, and people asking how many followers you have...don't even get me started on Twitter. ( not my thing yet )
Quickly and I do mean quickly things changed.  It went from leaving a comment on a blog post to my finger scrolling more on my phone than miles I've swam....and trust me I've swam a lot of miles in my life.  Master mind groups were forming faster than I could reply to a comment and my head began to spin.
Seeing images of teachers singing songs with their students and giving fancy high fives at the front door of their classroom started to become the norm.  The perfect classroom that never had a border out of place or a pile of ungraded paper anywhere to be found was not seen though.  
Perfect hair, smiles, classrooms, lesson plans, libraries, it all seemed too perfect...way too perfect.  I started to even feel a little overwhelmed by it all.  I could see how a new teacher that didn't have the money to spend on their classroom would feel a little 'less than.'  The new teacher that is overwhelmed by the curriculum and behavior management alone is feeling even  more inadequate while his/her finger is me!  I've had a few reach out to me saying they cry at night because they are so overwhelmed.
I'm thankful that there has been a small shift - very tiny but still noticeable.  Teachers posting 'real' pictures and owning their ungraded paper piles, or messy classroom.  We need a balance of this my friends.  Life isn't perfect, in fact it's far from it.  
I guess I just want to remind you that you are wonderful and the look or theme of your classroom doesn't define you!  Your students admire, trust and love you - so don't feel like you have to sing, stand on tables, dance, stay till 6 pm fixing every little loose border or messy cubby.  They will get messy again and your classroom will start each day with your smile and love showered on these lucky students.  Be you, be proud of what you do, you are making a difference every single day.

social media pressure

Be blessed, remember that you are enough and as always happy teaching!  

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