“You have such a cushy job!”

Recently, another teacher said to me, “You have such a ‘cushy’ job!” Not knowing what to say I smiled, laughed and walked away thinking.

Do I have a ‘cushy’ job? Do I sit around chatting, drinking tea and having a good time all day?

Well, as a teacher of English to students from different language backgrounds I do have to do a lot of chatting. But believe me or not, the chat has a purpose. I have to engage these students in purposeful conversation to give them practice, extend their vocabulary and to increase their confidence when speaking English. One of the Kindergarten students asked me why I always came in to play with them every Friday afternoon. What could I say? “I am gathering data and information that will inform me of where to take you next along the literacy continuum”. Again, I just smiled and laughed.

As to drinking tea all day … Well, I do try to keep rehydrated with all that talking, but I get as much time as any other teacher to grab a quick bite and most of my cups of tea are never finished. I still have to do playground duty, spend ‘eating time’ in classrooms to free up class teachers and use my release from face to face teaching time to write up my evaluations and communicate with teachers about the students that I am supporting.

Do I have a good time? Most definitely “YES!” I am so privileged. I am able to spend time with a Kindergarten Language Group and share stories, tell stories, draw stories, act out stories and practise using and playing with sounds and words. I also get my very own Ipad to play with them. I have fun talking, reading and writing with Years 1 and 2. Love, love, love the Educreations app! Year 4 and I have been communicating with each other on Edmodo and made very funny movie trailers based on guided reading books using Imovie. Stage 3 let me be part of their PBL last year which was an exciting new experience. And the Parent Group and I cook, do crafts and enjoy interesting speakers.

So do I have a cushy job? I most definitely do … But I try to work hard at it.

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