This month I’m participating in 30 Days of Thanks (#30DaysofThanks) by writing a blog post about 30 things I’m thankful for. To join in, go to the link above. The best part is, you don’t need to have a blog or even be on social media to take part in the project; you just need to be thankful. I can’t wait to see how my life might change by spending the 30 days in November giving thanks for things in my life — every single day.
Today while I was getting up at 5;45am on a Saturday morning in order to go and proctor the SAT, I said a quick “thank you.” Rather than cursing the fact that I had to be up so early on a weekend, I was grateful that I have a way to earn a bit of extra money.
Everyone knows that teachers don’t get paid what we deserve, and that’s even more true this year, when budget cuts have caused my district to institute Furlough Days. Sure, having a day off here and there is nice, but not getting paid for it isn’t. I was already fairly strapped, and the thought of making even a bit less is so disheartening.
Which is why I am so thankful that I have small opportunities to work some extra hours and get money here and there for things like proctoring the SAT. I also get paid an extra stipend for being my school’s webmaster (or, web administrator, as I like to say). I also get paid two stipends for teaching yearbook and journalism, because of the extra hours that those classes each take. It makes some of those late days worth it. (Although, truth be told, I’d still love to teach the classes even without the stipend. Shhhh!). And the last bit of extra money I get is another stipend for having my Masters degree. The little extras allow me to make it.
More recently, I discovered a few different websites for teachers by teachers where I can submit lessons and other instructional materials and sell them to other teachers for a few dollars each. There’s another site that will pay me for a little bit for answering student questions online. Those little things add up after a while.
Do I dream of someday winning the lottery? Of course! I’d love it if I never had to worry about making ends meet. But the reality is, I’m so thankful that I have a job that I love, that’s secure, and that offers small opportunities to earn extra cash if I want to put in the extra effort. There are many people who aren’t as lucky.