29 Examples Of What It’s Like To Be A Modern Teacher 

by TeachThought Staff

Mediocre teaching is not difficult. Great teaching is another matter entirely.

For those teachers who constantly push, revise, take notes, Google, blog, connect, download, falter, and push even harder, we have collected the following ‘data points’–both serious and otherwise–so that you can see all that goes into your craft.


29 Examples Of What It’s Like To Be A Modern Teacher 

  1. You’ve spent as much (or more) time redesigning assessments than you have ‘re-teaching.’
  2. You’ve cried at least twice this semester.
  3. You know the reading level of every single student, no matter what content area you teach, or how many students you teach.
  4. Students grow more confident as the year goes on, not less.
  5. You realized that your Project-Based Learning unit really should’ve probably been a novel study, and your ‘poetry unit’ really should’ve been a self-directed, Challenge-Based Learning unit, and….well, you get the picture.
  6. You realized that your PBL unit lacked enough student agency and that your challenge-based learning unit could have data privacy issues.
  7. You dream in edu-jargon about what education is and could be with a little innovation.
  8. You’ve taught before class, during class, after class, during your lunch, during your planning period, in the hallway, before school, after school, via twitter, across email, and through YouTube.
  9. You focused more on learning than teaching.
  10. Your unit and lesson documents have more post-it notes (indicating needs for revision) than original text.
  11. Speaking of post-it notes, they’re making more than 50% of your books unreadable with clutter.
  12. Your instructional coach actually quick-walks the other way when they see you.
  13. You can recall, on demand, more than 75% of your academic standards.
  14. You text with your principal.
  15. You’re out of paper, hard drive space, bandwidth, or email storage by December. 
  16. The email address of more than 25 parents ‘auto-completes’ in your email address bar.
  17. You’ve Google’d ‘instructional strategies’ at least 11 times.
  18. Your district technology coordinator is intimidated by you.
  19. You read TeachThought, Edutopia, and Mindshift more than you watch local news, The Bachelor, and Netflix put together.
  20. You’ve encouraged your spouse, children, or friend to be ‘data-driven.’
  21. Students (current and former) keep finding your personal accounts on social media.
  22. Your facebook page has more edu-commentary than the YouTube comments section of a Betsy Devos press conference.
  23. You have more than 3 legal pads full of meeting notes that seemed important at the time.
  24. You’ve spoken to the grandparents of certain students more often than your own siblings.
  25. You’ve ‘borrowed’ someone else’s coffee, tea, or Diet Coke.
  26. You’ve fallen asleep grading or planning and wanted to fall asleep teaching.
  27. You’ve noticed a growing suspicion that the ‘unit’ may not be the best way to package curriculum.
  28. Students seem bothered when you’re disappointed in them/their performance.
  29. You literally never stop thinking what you could’ve done better.