Being a teacher is one of the hardest professions anyone can choose.
There are constant strategy changes, exhausting emotional labor, and schools smell like sweat.
Having the right romantic partner can make being a teacher easier. I spent four underpaid, overworked years teaching in Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools. A nice Friday night date night over a bottle of wine (or three) helped put the rest of the week in perspective.
If you’re trying to woo a CMS teacher, here are a few things you’ll have to do:
(1) Become a master planner.
A CMS teacher’s schedule is more than just the school day. They have after-school meetings, clubs, athletics, events, and lesson planning.
The quirky spontaneous act might impress some, but it’ll likely muck up a teacher’s meticulously planned to-do list.
Their little free time is precious and you have to be respectful of it.
(2) Leave hype comments on their Instagram so students think they’re cool.
I used to feel embarrassed about being “the cool teacher.”
There’s this attitude held by some that if your students like you, it’s because you’re not strict enough. But days are just easier if the kids think you’re cool.
So when those little stalkers find your partner on the gram, you better be leaving fire emojis on all their selfies.
(3) Let them rant about kids, no matter how long it takes.
Pay attention while they talk about how Tyler will never shut up during lessons, or how Keisha totally nailed her one-on-one relooping.
Teachers spend most days alone with their students. Sharing those stories with you helps a teacher feel less invisible.
It might take time. There’s a lot to complain about when it comes to the overstimulated children of Charlotte. Just get comfortable on the couch, nod, and say “Wow, and then what happened?” for as long it takes.
(4) Be self-sufficient.
Students are notoriously ill-equipped to solve their own problems.
I once had to introduce a “Deal with it yourself” rule in my classroom, in which I was not to be asked to intervene in problems unless they included anaphylaxis. The last thing CMS teachers want to deal with when they get home is a romantic partner who can’t take care of themselves.
Be decisive, responsible, and resourceful. A CMS teacher will appreciate it.
(5) Support their extracurricular activities.
One of the most attractive things a date ever did for me was come to my student’s drama production. We got into an argument afterward because I found the play adorable but she thought the kids couldn’t act, and she didn’t understand that’s what makes it adorable.
If you want to make a CMS teacher melt, cheer on their athletic team, volunteer on school cleanup day, or help decorate for the prom. And keep your opinions on the actors to yourself, Roger Ebert.
(6) Be respectful of their job.
Everyone thinks they have the hardest job in the world, but teachers actually might.
Just because you make three times the salary at a large corporation doesn’t mean your job is more important than theirs.
Understand the weight of what they do.