This AMA is a follow-up to the 3 part summer series I created for the podcast to celebrate 20 years of sharing teaching ideas online and reflect on my personal and professional growth during that time.
In the final ep of that series, I included a link to an anonymous Google form for folks to submit questions about things I didn’t answer in the series that they’re curious about. Your questions were absolutely wonderful and you’ve brought up some super interesting things for me to discuss!
Here are the questions you'll hear me answer in this episode:
- Childfree or childless? "If it's not too personal, I wondered about your infertility journey. I remember praying for you when you shared about it before. Having gone through IVF myself, I know it may be too sensitive, and I respect that." (NOTE: If this is a triggering topic for you, skip to the 13:30 minute mark.)
- Blowback from taking a stand? "Your message about how the train was leaving the station (you can't keep waiting to convince everyone to go with you, and you are just going to move forward with what you thought was right) has really stuck with me, maybe moreso than anything else you've ever said and I've been following you since 2003. It's really been impactful on my life because I really cared way too much about making sure every possible person would be happy with every possible thing I did. I have been wondering, what were the repercussions of that? Did you have a drop in followers, angry emails, anything like that?
- Enneagram number? "Have you done any work with the Enneagram system? In the last few years, I have heard you speak in a way that sounds as though you may have. If so, I would love to hear about it."
- Highly-sensitive teachers? "How does being an empath impact your work! Can you explain with some examples?" and "As an introvert and empath myself (happily married, but no kids), I have found it hard to make friends in the teaching world. Many teachers are strong personalities who either don’t seem to understand or relate to me or I feel drained by. Any tips for introverts and empaths regarding surviving and thriving in teaching?"and "You talked about how as an introvert & empathetic person, you had to find ways to get energy from your students instead of it just being a drain. Would you share some? I related to this immensely and wanted to hear more! Thanks!
- Mental health struggles? "Do you have any advice for teachers who struggle with anxiety and depression and did you struggle with either of those things as a teacher? I love your work and appreciate your perspective so much! I am also an introvert and a highly sensitive person and sometimes I don't think I am cut out for this career because of my personality and mental health struggles."
- Admin who don't share the 40 Hour workweek vision? "Hi Angela, I love all you do and I loved your three-series podcast this summer. Thank you very much. Would you consider doing an episode about how teachers can work alongside administrators who DON'T share the 40 Hour Teacher Workweek vision? I'm talking about the administrators who routinely expect overworking as a part of the job (and some colleagues, too!)"
- Connecting with local advocacy groups? "Beyond putting this hope out into the universe and sharing it with you, I wanted to ask — as someone connected to many education justice and activist groups and orgs in the city — if you have any desire to get involved in our local work to make the NYC schools more equitable, culturally responsive, and democratic? Your voice is so powerful and we need all hands on deck. Let me know if you have any desire to get involved and I’m happy to connect you to folks who will find ways your unique gifts can serve the fight for education justice in NYC and beyond."
Click here to read the transcript and participate in the discussion or, join our podcast Facebook group here to connect with other teachers and discuss the Truth for Teachers' podcast episodes.