In case anyone actually finds this blog and reads it, here is a little about me. I can honestly use the name "Teacher Stuff" since I am a teacher. I will be starting my 13th year (let's hope it's lucky!) in August. I can't even say "fall" because we start close to the beginning of the month! I have taught first grade for all 13 years. The funny thing about this is that I NEVER wanted to teach first grade. I had my heart set on 4th grade because that is the year I remember being the most fun when I was a student. But, when it came time to get a job, I was told "You'll be in first, second or third, maybe Kindergarten." Then my mind shifted to, "Oh crap! Please not Kindergarten!!!!" I began teaching first grade in July 1998 when we were on a year round calendar. And, that is where I have been for the last 12 years, loving almost every minute of it. I have changed schools few times, some for my own reasons, others for the district shutting them down! Always something new and exciting!
Part of the reason I want to blog is for my own sense of being, for lack of a better word. After this last school year, even towards the end of the year, I was feeling drained, tired and a little bummed. I was tired of what I was doing. Not the teaching part, but what I was teaching. Some people would say it's time to move on to a new grade level, but I love first grade. I love seeing the eyes light up when they "get it". And, I feel like I am really good at what I do. I don't say that to be cocky, but I truly believe I was meant to teach first grade (divine intervention 12 years ago???). Anyway, it got me to thinking that I need to change what I do and what I present to my students. I feel like I have been doing the same things year after year and now I am tired of them. I need something to challenge me and my thought process and creativeness (which I feel is lacking!).
Another reason for doing the blog is to vent. My hubby, however great he is, doesn't like to listen to me complain about school. He says it's pointless, which it is, unless I am going to fight the board and district on their crappy thoughts and plans. (BTW, I won't do that, because I value my job and love what I do and it's how we eat and keep a roof over our heads! ) Being in the lovely state of California, we are still dealing with the HUGE financial crisis. I am glad other states are doing better, but ours is getting worse. And now it's hit me personally. Between the furlough days, no pay raise in a couple years and now a HUGE raise in insurance costs, we are hit again and again. And the district says there isn't a thing they can do (All the people at the district office make $150,000+ compared to my $65,000...huh!?!?!?!). So, I will tighten my purse strings, do without (which is nothing new, I am a mom and a teacher!), and make so with what I have and still do my darndest to give my students the best education they can get!
Maybe someday, someone will read this blog and it can be used for what I want to do - help other teachers share ideas, frustrations and questions. I wish there was a blog like this when I started teaching. My teacm wasn't the most supportive and I felt like I was doing it all on my own. And I was, really. I give my friend a hard time now, since she was my "mentor teacher" who didn't really mentor. She thought I had it all together and knew what I was doing. I guess I faked it well. I cried a lot the first couple years and did what I could. I look back now at some of the things and just laugh at myself for not knowing. I still don't know it all, but I do what I can and hope for the best!