In Florence and at our school we both often get comments about how young we look. “You guys look just like the students.” “You guys teach high school kids? You can’t be much older than they are!” “They’re too young…they never watched that TV show.” [common occurrence at the teacher lunch table] So yes, we are young. We know how to text and we both have Facebook accounts. We own a Wii and watch silly YouTube videos. However, we’ve also noticed that there are many things that separate us from our students. We may not quite be grown-ups yet….but we are definitely not teenagers anymore. Just a few points of separation…
- We’re married. Our conversations don’t revolve around, “did you know that so and so likes so and so,” or “He totally cheated on her x number of times,” and “OMG they broke up!?!!?”
- We work for a living. It’s a foreign concept to our students.
- We pay bills and live on a budget. Lauren doesn’t go shopping every single weekend to buy 10 new outfits. Dylan doesn’t blow his money on fast food and his truck. [Dylan doesn’t have a truck…which is yet another point of separation.]
- We read for fun. We sit at home talking about the books we’re reading. We blog about them to you. We have a reading list. We read every night before bed. These are our students everyday. “Did you read last night? “Nope.” “I hate [insert book title here.] It’s so dumb.”
- We like school and both want to go back for more! Our students hate school and can’t wait to be finished.
- We use our spending money to buy things like plants, camping gear and books. [see above for spending trends of our students.]
- The three most watched TV stations at our house are: HGTV, National Geographic and TLC. Our kids talk about MTV shows that we’ve not heard of nor seen.
- We remember a world without cell phones and the internet. The students’ worlds = cell phones and the internet.
- We enjoy relaxing Saturdays full of naps, reading and TV watching. I ask a student on Monday morning, “How was your weekend?” Student responds in a despondent voice, “[sigh] boring and stupid, I didn’t do anything.” Tragic.
- We have that little privilege called perspective. Good grades in high school did help us get into college. Good grades in college did help us get jobs. Jobs helped us afford a place to live. Perspective. The kids…merely from lack of experience…have none.
Some days these points of separation can be incredibly frustrating. Often they are simply amusing. And on the good days they are reasons we feel we have something to offer our students…some tid bits of maturity. We don’t have it all together. We are not full of all wisdom. But we’re learning that God has been very gracious to us to teach us a few lessons since being 16. Hopefully as teachers, we can pass a few things along!