After my experience so far I am impressed that she has made it for that many years. Here is an excerpt from the conclusion that discusses why Ilana teaches:
"It was the sense of doing work that was concrete, interactive, of knowing that it would matter to someone if I didn't show up one morning... To say I felt guilty isn't quite accurate; it was more that I had become sort of single-mindedly focused on trying to make up to them the things I felt they had unjustly missed.
That, and I liked teaching. "It's addictive," one of my mentors told me, "because it's so f--ing hard. And when you do it successively, it's a high...it feels amazing."
I couldn't agree more. Teaching is so hard, and this year has definitely made me more grateful for the great teachers I had. People know teaching is hard, but they don't know how hard it is until they do it. This is probably one of the reasons why so many people have quit City year so far and it's only been 3 months. My team alone has lost 3 people, which is 25% of the team. Many other teams all over New York are losing corps members at the same rate. The amount of skill needed to be a good teacher still overwhelms me. You need to be engaging, have tough skin, have lots of knowledge, have great organization and planning skills, be a good communicator with not only the students but parents and faculty. You need to be alert and have energy ALL the time. You need to know when to be funny and humorous with the students, and then know how to "bring it back," as a teacher would say. I could elaborate more on these qualities, but I'm sure you know what I'm talking about. Pretty much all of us have seen teachers in action at some point in our life.
The one class I teach is an art club during our after school program. The rest of the day I tutor and support my teacher in the classroom. When I teach those classes I either walk away feeling a little defeated or I walk away with that "high" that Ilana talked about. It's so satisfying when I'm teaching and things are going well. I hope to keep getting better as the months go on.