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Friday, March 29, 2013

The Job?

Are you one of the fortunate people that love what you do?  I am.  Yes, I have those days where all you want to do is hit the snooze and go back to bed, or just say, "To heck with it all, I need a mental health day today!"  Even on the days when I feel like that, when I get to my school, I just feel better.  I'm sure the double dose of coffee doesn't hurt!  So, yes I have a job, but it is so much more than that.  I feel guilty sometimes even calling it a job.

I teach in a K-5 building with 3 sections of each grade, with 4th grade being the only exception at 2 sections.  My role as a reading specialist is to provide Tier I and Tier II instruction for literacy in my building.  For those of you who don't speak RTI, Tier I just means that I help teachers with their classroom instruction in reading and Tier II means that I also pull small groups of children to give them more intensive reading instruction   When I type that, I am awed at how simple that sounds.  Pretty easy job description right?

If you are anything like me, the guilt of not being able to help everyone in your building that needs help; students, teachers, and parents alike is enough to drive one crazy.  I feel so torn sometimes!  I would love to hear how other building reading specialists structure their day.  So tell me, what does a typical day for you look like?  I know that I am in pretty good company with all of you hard workers out there.

Monday, March 25, 2013

The beginning

I can't believe that I am actually doing this.  I am going to attempt to further my educational learning by blogging. Immediately, all of the images from the movie "Julie and Julia" flash through my head.  After only a short time, I am going to become the most popular blog mentioned in Educational Weekly.  I will be commissioned to write a book and then comes the book tour and a regular to fill in for Kathie Lee or Hoda on the "Today" show.

Okay, that may take a while to happen.  So, in the meantime I am hoping to reach out to others who feel that teaching children to read, write, and comprehend is the best thing that we can do for our school children today.

I have been teaching for 18 years all in the same district.  I have been lucky to wear many different hats in those 18 years.  I taught 3rd grade for 9 years.  I then had my first little darling, and came back to work part time.  I job-shared with a very good friend of mine.  We taught the gifted program together at our school.  She taught the reading and I taught the math.  We did that for 3 years.  I then had my second little darling and decided to come back to teaching full time.  I then taught the gifted program full time at a different school in my district.  I did that for 2 years.  I was very much intrigued by a position in our district called "Curriculum Leader."  This intrigued me because I saw that it was a great opportunity to help teachers in the classroom.  I did this for one year and kept the gifted math portion of that job.  I then went way out on a limb and took a job as our school librarian.  I quickly realized that I needed to get back to what I love which is working more directly with students.  I then became a reading specialist.  I went back to the school that I originally started at, and have been doing that for 2 years now.  I also just recently finished my school administrator's Masters' degree.

I have been married to my husband for almost 17 years.  I have two daughters age 9 and 6.  I live and teach in a suburb outside of Chicago.

I hope you will join me in my journey!