It sounds so cliche but I knew I wanted to be a teacher from a very early age. I have fond memories of forcing my little sister to play “school” with me. I have always loved school and learning new things, however, once I began studying to become a teacher myself…surprise! Turns out not all kids love school. This leads me through teaching in a general education classroom, serving as a math specialist, and developing testing items with the State Department of Education, all the while I was seeing over and over how more and more kids simply don’t. like. school.
*Remember this because we will circle back.
I am the fun and silly teacher that is incredibly creative all while boasting a strong understanding of curriculum and content standards. I am the teacher who tries to make kids laugh and enjoy the time that we get to spend together. The teacher who *ugly* cries at the end of the school year because I will miss my students (aka “my kids”) while we are apart for the 10 horribly long weeks of summer before I get to see how much they have grown when they come back to visit *their* classroom.
That’s what it will always be… a classroom is a shared space. Not my district’s, the schools, or even mine as the teacher, but rather a room that only becomes a living classroom when students bring their life to it. It wasn’t uncommon to have my walls covered in book reviews… in first grade. Or even student- made anchor charts about different ways to solve a math problem… I can honestly say that I have learned as much if not more than my students during my time as a teacher and I will forever be grateful for that.
All of these sweet memories, routines, and lessons have led me to where I am now. I am now the Head of Curriculum at Dailies and am elated to have the opportunity to share this joy for learning, kids, and passion for education with FAMILIES! Yes, I will always have a heart for the schools and teachers (especially now with the COVID pandemic), but my heart resonates so deeply with parents.
During my time as a teacher, I also became a mom to four three amazingly creative, bright, and silly kids of my own. little boys . Through these motherly moments, I have learned so much about patience, persistence, and how to clean everything and anything that can (and will!) be brought into a house. All jokes aside, this journey of parenting is SO hard. There is no manual, guide, or video that can tell me all about my children and the next steps to take when one goes a little wacky. Parenting takes so much TIME and dedication in every moment to make sure that things aren’t missed and lessons are solidified (with grace!).
Remember the girl who in the first paragraph was talking about how much she loved school and said it was so easy…. and then she was surprised that people didn’t like it and that it was hard for some people? NEWSFLASH! Parenting is. the. same. Most people struggle to meet the needs of their children in every little moment because EVERY child is different. I was that mom when my middle son was born and I look back on those moments with a heavy heart. Life, in general, is challenging to navigate at times, let alone with one, two, or even a few little pairs of feet trailing right behind you. It’s okay that it’s hard. It’s okay that you need a break. It’s okay to need help. Most importantly, it’s okay to ask for help. Chances are you are not the first parent to navigate this storm with your kids, if you are, then there are probably other parents charting these waters along with you now that you can latch onto to ride the tide together. I hope to be a resource, friend, and encouragement to you as you make decisions (sometimes really hard ones) about your child’s education. The education piece doesn’t have to be SO hard, let me use my experience, passion for education and kids, and now quirky parent tips to empower you to take an active role in your child’s education. Let’s do this… together!