8 Years Down...Many More To Go

Tuesday, June 12, 2018
Hi friends!

I just finished my 8th year of teaching. I spent the first 4 years in the media center and just completed my 4th year in the classroom.

A little background...

I student taught in the fall of 2006 and graduated in the spring of 2007. I was taking a class during the last semester of my college years and I had a very unsupportive professor. It changed my whole outlook on teaching and did not take a teaching job. I spent about 6 months working a dead-end job trying to figure out my next move. I began to search for a better job and started working for the university that I completed my undergraduate degree. I have always had a passion for reading, so I decided to work on my Masters of Information and Library Science. I thought about working at a university library, but realized that was not my path in life. I volunteered/interned at a local school and found my calling again. That internship turned into my first teaching position in the media center.

I will admit that it was not my best year in life. I had to adjust to working with all teachers and students, but my teaching background gave me a lot of valuable information. Fast forward 4 years and budget cuts created job sharing of media specialists between buildings. I was forced out of my position due to my teaching license, but that turned out to be a blessing in disguise. I moved to a 4th grade classroom and I LOVED my new position. I had so many incredible experiences in that first year back in the classroom and was even chosen as Teacher of the Year in my building. I found my love of teaching yet again and I am so thankful for that first year.

I spent 2 more years teaching at the school (one year a 3rd/4th split class; one year a 4th/5th split class) which is as awful as it sounds! I was also commuting 2+ hours a day and with no pay raise since I began working for the district. I decided in 2017 that enough was enough and left the school corporation.

What about now...

Enter my 1st year at my new school! I taught 4th grade High Ability students this past school year and had a wonderful experience. Was it perfect? No. Will any year be perfect? No. I have become okay with the lack of perfection and strive to improve each year. I am looking forward to my 2nd year at my new school and my 9th year of teaching.

I have been on summer break for a week now and I working on improving myself through downtime and exercise, but I spend a lot of time in the summer preparing for the next school year. I have read 2 PD books, which I will post about later.

If you are curious now, I have read the following books:

Minds on Mathematics                                       Ditch That Homework: Practical Strategies to Help Make Homework Obsolete by [Miller, Matt, Keeler, Alice]

I would love to hear more about your teaching background and your first year of teaching!

Teacher Tidbit Tuesday: Who Am I?

Thursday, June 7, 2018
Hello everyone! Thank you for taking the time to read my blog...people still read blogs, right? I will admit that I am more of an Instagram and Facebook user, but I think continuing my blog will help me share more ideas in depth.

I am jumping on the Teacher Tidbit Tuesday bandwagon! Although I am a couple of days behind, I still want to participate. So here goes my first post!

I have been teaching 4th grade for 4 years and I also was a media specialist for 4 years. I have 8 years of experience under my belt and I am looking forward to year 9! I spent 7 years commuting over an hour each way for my job and last summer I said enough and decided to leave whether or not I had another position. I was thrilled when I was offered a job at my current school teaching 4th grade High Ability, just 5 miles away from my house! 

Being able to cut my commute down that drastically helped save me! I want to go to work and be with my students and teammates. I am at a school corporation that values me as an educator and learner. I have gained so much knowledge in the past year and I am looking forward to next year.

I could not have survived though without this amazing group of women (my teammates)!

I spend my home life with this amazing man! 

I love to read, play games, watch TV and movies, exercise, and travel. 

My Favorites

Food: Deep Dish Pizza
Book: Charlotte's Web
Movie: The Sandlot
Series: Harry Potter
TV Show: Game of Thrones
Season: Fall

Thank you for taking the time to read some information about me. 


Take Care of You!

Saturday, January 13, 2018
After a blissful two weeks off of work, and I really mean off, I am back into somewhat of a groove of a schedule. I spent my winter break and really focused on myself. I watched TV, read books that I want to read for myself, and spent time with family and friends. I really wanted another week to try and get myself back into a school mindset, but that wasn't going to happen.

I went back to school on Monday and what to my wondering eyes and ears did we focus on during our staff meeting?

Self-Care and Wellness

As I stated in my previous blog post, I am at a new school and district this year, and I feel truly blessed to be a part of an incredible teaching community. We spent our morning focusing on ourselves.

For the beginning part of the day, we had the option to participate in a yoga session. I put on my comfortable workout clothes and attended. Now, yoga is not really my thing, but I decided to give it a shot. I know there are a lot of people out there that are devoted to yoga, but I have more of this mindset: NAMASTE IN BED. I love to workout, but I don't have the right mindset to relax and let go. It was a new experience for me, and I like the calm mindset, but it will take a lot more practice for me to truly hone-in on relaxing my mind.

We also spent some time learning about a balanced life (and even participated in some events for balanced) and how the brain and our mood is affected by the amygdala. A few of our staff members attended a brain research PD and are now sharing their learning with us. They will even be coming to the classroom to teach these lessons to my students. As someone with a B.S. in Psychology, I am thrilled to be incorporating this into my classroom and teaching students the importance of taking care of theirselves and their minds. I also can't wait to share what I learn with you!

The Wellness Challenge

One of the ideas that we are implementing, as a staff, is the wellness challenge. We have a list of activities that we can complete each day to earn points and try to win prizes. I love this idea, because it helps keep me accountable, but it doesn't focus on weight loss, it focuses on overall wellness. Are you interested in working on your wellness? Click the image below to download a free template. You can choose to print it on post-it notes or just as the list itself!

Let me know what you do to take care of you! #stopteacherguilt


Back In Action

Sunday, January 7, 2018

Well color me embarrassed...I have not blogged for a year and half! I spent the past two weeks lounging and acting like a slug, so it gave me some time to think about my next steps in my career. Let me give you some background information about me!

New Job

I spent 6 years job searching and I am happy to say that this past summer I found a new school, new school district, and a place to call my school home. I had been previously commuting for 2.5+ hours a day and I decided that I was leaving that teaching position no matter what! The week that I resigned from that position, I was interviewed and offered a position that is less than 10 minutes away from where I currently live.

I spent the entire summer moving in and getting my new classroom ready and working on a grad school class (more information to come). Therefore, I didn't really have the time to sit down and write about anything. Then the school year took off and I was constantly running after it, because I could not seem to stay on top of everything. Even though my commute was cut down, I had to begin over with new curriculum and new expectations. Again, I was taking a grad school class at the same time.

I am now free of my commute and grad school classes (for the time being) so I feel like I can focus more on my professional self (outside of school).

Grad School

This past summer I began to work on my High Ability Licensure to add to my teaching license. I still have 3 classes to go, but I have decided no more classes during the school year...it's too much to stay on top of while working full-time. I have learned so much through the 2 classes that I have taken and I am excited to learn more in future classes. Why did I decide to take on this endeavor?

Teaching Position

So why did I choose to add on this licensure? There are a couple of different reasons! I was always sufficient at teaching the low and on level students, but I felt like I was lacking on teaching the students that needed higher level learning. The other reason is that I am teaching students that are exclusively high ability. All of the students are tested in and added to the classroom, so I need to learn how to meet their needs. The first semester went okay, but I am certain that I can do an even better job the second semester! By continuing to learn in my life, I will be a better teacher for the students.

Thank you for taking the time to read my post and I can't wait to share more with you in the future!

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