My 2015 New Year’s Teaching Pseudo-Resolutions

I wish I could say it’s been a good year, but if my 2014 were a person, she would be the love child of Ursula and Voldemort.  

Or maybe the love twins of Joffrey and Regina George.

What I’m trying to say is that I am very, very ready for 2015.

I don’t really believe in New Year’s resolutions. I don’t think I’ve ever actually kept one for more than a month, and I just kind of see it as an additional way for me to eventually hate myself. With that in mind, I’ve created these pseudo-resolutions that I think are do-able, don’t require a ton of work on my part, and won’t induce deep, abiding shame if I don’t get around to it. 

1) Tape down the cords and wires that currently run wild across my classroom floor like the vines in Jumanji 

As entertaining it is for both my students and me, I’m kind of tired of tripping over them almost daily.

2) Try to remember to take attendance 

Notice I did not make this quantifiable. That’s how I like to set goals. 

3) Try to remember to wear my ID badge more

This one won’t be hard since I think I wore it three times last semester. 

4) Do yoga… or something. 

I’m a much happier human when I work out in the mornings before school. Yoga would be great, but I’ll also settle for hypocritically running down the hallway to catch and punish running students or holding a class wall-sit competition. 

5) Build a sense of community via Friday Teacher Treats

A friend of mine works in Austin, Texas, where she and her coworkers are on a rotating schedule of bringing each other breakfast tacos every Friday. Doesn’t that sound magical?

I’m pretty sure if I can get my hallway in on something like this, all our students will pass all their standardized tests. It may also close the education gap.

I’ll let you know how this theory plays out.

6) Look for the Jennifer Lawrence in Frustrating Work Person

Right now my way of dealing with my Frustrating Work Person is simply trying to avoid him at all costs, which doesn’t feel like the right way to deal with anything, let alone a person. Instead of this, I’ve decided to pretend he’s Jennifer Lawrence and I’ve just found out I’m sitting next to her on a plane and am trying to win her friendship by being friendly and kind but, like, totally low-key about it.

Don’t lie. You think about celebrity airplane friendships when you fly, too.

(Or if you didn’t, now you will.)

7) Don’t put anything related to school in the back seat of car unless absolutely necessary 

Earlier this year I had so much school junk in the back seat that I actually moved up my passenger seat SO THAT I COULD FIT MORE JUNK IN THE BACK SEAT. Then a very tall man got in the passenger seat* and he pretty much had to ride with his kneecaps in his eyeball sockets because I couldn’t even move the seat back due to the 30 plastic tubs that had made my car their permanent home.

8) Keep school whining to under 30 seconds 

I’m allowing myself to go over, but for every additional 30 seconds I have to first either do 10 push-ups or 30 crunches. I’ll either stop whining or become totally jacked, either of which would be terrific!

The year’s motto will be, “Less crap. More fun.” 

I believe in you, 2015.



P.S. What are your New Year’s pseudo-resolutions?

*Just realized this sounds like a random man climbed in my car. Don’t worry. He was invited.


  1. Anonymous

    I want to finish reading "The Buddha in the Classroom" by Donna Quesada. I'm hoping it will help me meditate more, since I already practice yoga. I'm also hoping that both will help me bring a more calm and peaceful existence to my classroom!

  2. Anonymous

    Hmmm….I actually thought I might try to obsess about them less, but I know that's not happening. I like your 30 second rule – I totally need the crunches. Thanks again for making me laugh, and especially for validating my fierce love of my job. It feels good to know I'm not alone!

  3. Anonymous

    Taking attendance has gotten so bad for me that I have to assign a student to come and tell me every morning, by 8:30, to enter it on the computer,Yes, on the computer! So much easier than paper, and I STILL can't get it done by myself. LOL Oh, and currently, my *Frustrating Work Person* is the new Common Core Standards, which have basically turned my life upside down in all six subjects that I teach. Needless to say, having a happy attitude has been my challenge this year-even in my beloved profession!

  4. Rob Sack

    Oh no! I'm caught up to your present! You are on an amazing journey, and doing a fantastic job of sharing it with us. Thank you! If you really feel like 2014 was Ursamort, go back and skim over your blog. There's definitely some Harriel in there! Happy new year!

  5. Sheila

    I resolve to use puppets more often with my second graders. They pay attention when I have a puppet in my hand so maybe I can capitalize on that 5 minute focus window that I have with my kiddos.

  6. Tracy Wenzel

    I think I work with the friend of yours in Austin, TX at a Title I middle school. My team also brings each other breakfast almost every morning. It's wonderful to have amazing co-workers!

  7. Dona Sheppard

    Really it is a big task for the teacher to keep the class silent and make the students enjoy the topic. For most of the teachers, it is just like a big hurdle. Reading your article was really funny and serious also! Thanks for sharing your experience. Really something needs to be taken as the new year's resolution. After School Club Sugar Hill, GA.

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