Every since I was a little girl I knew I wanted to be a teacher. I’m talking like when I was 6 years old little girl. I had a chalkboard that I would set up and put all my stuffed animals around it. They were my students and I was the teacher. It is weird for me to think about not knowing what I wanted to do when I was an adult because I have always known. I took a child development class in high school and ate it up. We also had a a preschool at my high school so I took that class and got to play with the cute preschool kids every time I had that period. It was heaven. In college I got a job working at a nearby elementary school. I volunteered in schools while going to college. I took all the classes I needed so I could get into a good elementary education program.
Then it came time to look into which school I would go to after I graduated from the two year college I was attending for my Associates. I made three visits and fell in love with one school, Westminster College, a small, private, liberal school. I knew I couldn’t afford it but just felt it was the right place to go. When talking with my amazing dad about it he simply said, “We’ll make it work.” And that we did. I worked, my parents helped out a little, I had a few scholarships, but mostly I took out school loans. Looking back on my younger self, I wish I would have worked more and taken out less loans but no good can come from wishing. My school loans are paid off, I attended an amazing school, got my teaching degree, and had some of the most wonderful experiences, made fabulous friends and connections. I wouldn’t change my decision to go to Westminster College not once, not twice, not in a million years.
Because teaching was such a huge part of my life I felt like having a spot on my blog just made sense. I feel like I know many things about teaching, I also feel like I have a lot to learn. With that being said I think it is important for my readers to have a background of my teaching and education background so what I say has some weight to it. I’m not saying things because it’s what others are saying or doing but because it’s what I’ve been taught, tried, failed at, or succeeded at.
Like I mentioned I went to a two year school and earned my Associates of Science from Dixie State in 2002. I then went to Westminster College and earned my Bachelors of Arts in Elementary Education and a minor in Spanish in 2004. I was able to go and live in Ceurnavaca, Mexico for three months going to a great language school. Oh the stories!! I can’t wait to share some of my many wonderful memories of living there. I took one semester off and went back to school at Westminster, go Griffins! I earned my Masters of Education and my Reading Endorsement in 2008. That’s it for now, but I think about going back and getting my Doctorate of Education. However, that’s not in the near future, I got me some babies to raise!
I said that’s it for now, but not really. While earning my masters I started teaching first grade in 2005. I do not recommend teaching your first year and being in a masters program. What was I thinking?! It’s over now and that I’m grateful for. While teaching for nine years I earned different endorsements and certifications, took many classes, and was always reading education books to help me become the best teacher I could be. My other endorsements and some of my certifications:
- ELS Endorsement (2009)
- Early Steps Reading Intervention (2010)
- Next Steps Reading Intervention (2015)
- Education Technology Endorsement (2016)
All the while serving on committees and associations, having mentor students and student teachers, living a life outside of teacher (HA!), starting a family (being pregnant and teaching is not an easy task) and starting to raise those said babies. I really am not trying to brag. I am just really trying to convey my dedication to my teaching career and the many amazing first grade kiddos I got to spend so much time with. I want you to know that when I put out suggestions or ideas that they come from my firsthand experience, my former colleges firsthand experience, from my many wonderful professors, my students, my education, my for fun reading of education books (seriously people I love reading and love reading education books!), the brains of my colleges, etc. I do know a little about teaching. 😉 I hope in time you find me to be a resource in your own classrooms and homes, with your students and children. I truly miss teaching! It’s an amazing job, not meant for everyone. It is a HARD job, with lots of tears, sweat, time, and not a lot of love given back. However, to get to see the look on a 6 years old’s face when something clicks or when they become these awesome readers is AMAZING! Geeze guys, I’m now tearing up because it’s such an awesome job! And I do miss lots of aspects of teaching.
I hold teachers in the most high respect and am grateful there are so many wonderful teachers that sacrifice time with their loved ones, their cold hard cash, and sanity. Please stay tuned to hear some of my tips, tricks, what I’d do differently when I go back to teaching, the funny and not so funny stories of being in a classroom with 6-7 year old’s for 9 years.