I found this Poem at the back of Carol Ann Tomlinson’s and Marcia B. Imbeau’s “leading and managing a differentiated classroom” (expect a full book review in the future)

Yes, But….

I teach in a four-wall box of drab proportions,

but choose to make it a place that feels like home.

I see too many students to know them as they need to be known,

But refuse to let that render them faceless in my mind.

I am overcome with the transmission of a cannon I can scarcely recall myself,

But will not represent learning as a burden to the young.

I suffer from a poverty of time,

And so will use what I have to best advantage those I teach.

I am an echo of the way school has been since forever,

But will not agree to perpetuate the echo for another generation.

I am told I am as good a teacher as the test scores I generate,

But will not allow my students to see themselves as data.

I work in isolation,

And am all the more determined to connect my students with the world.

I am small in the chain of power,

But have the power to change young lives.

there are many reasons to succumb,

And thirty reasons five times a day to succeed.

Most decisions about my job are removed from me ,

Except the ones that matter most.

I’m unsure of the author but the sentiment should be burned into the heart of every teacher. When I find myself struggling and frustrated I find it calms me and helps me to regain my balance.

My thanks to the poet for catching so beautifully the struggles and triumphs of teaching.