The last time I posted something like this was March 17, 2006. In Wish Me Luck I wrote about informing my principal that I was leaving my school at the conclusion of the school year. I loved teaching at that school, so it was a very difficult decision to leave. It turns out I had an amazing 12 years of being self-employed. I’ve traveled to just about every state, several countries, and the Caribbean to work with teachers. It’s been a dream job.
I have learned a lot over the last dozen years. I have connected with thousands of educators. I have been inspired by hundreds of presentations I've seen at conferences. I have witnessed fantastic teachers in action in the schools I've visited. I have truly learned so much about teaching, learning, and technology. I want to put the bank of incredible ideas I've gathered to good use.
I am delighted to say that I signed a contract to teach fifth grade for the 2018-2019 school year. The last time I taught fifth grade was in 2004, and I am so incredibly excited about spending an entire school year with my own group of young learners again.
I know what some readers are thinking: Why give up that dream job?
🗣 I'm not entirely giving up on speaking at conferences and schools. I don't want to be away from my students, so my travels will be limited to breaks and summer vacation.
🚸 My adorable twins, Connor and Ellie, are starting kindergarten at College View Elementary School in the Council Bluffs Community School District. The school is close to my house, and, more importantly, it’s an exceptional school. College View is an International Baccalaureate World School where students are encouraged to take action to make their community a better place.
🏫 After touring College View last year, I started to imagine what it would be like to teach there. Last month a 5th grade spot opened. With my kids entering kindergarten at College View, I know it the the right time and the right place to be a classroom teacher again.
✈️ After years of being a frequent flier, I'm ready to limit how much I travel. I don’t want Connor and Ellie to know me as a dad who is gone a lot. I want them to see me make a difference everyday in their school.
👨💻 It helps that my online workshops have been a huge success. Over the last year I have lead Classy Videos and Classy Graphics. The workshops take place in Google Classroom, and I teach them from my house. I will continue to offer online workshops a few times a year. They are incredibly rewarding to teach and provide extra income.
💥 I can't wait to combine what I can bring to the classroom with my students' ideas and passions. It's going to be amazing!
I am expecting that classroom teaching will be hard work. I’m embracing the challenge. I am expecting to be humbled. I’m ready to learn lessons that I don't even know I need to learn. I am expecting I’ll need help. I’m lucky that I've got educator friends from around the world who I know I can rely on for advice, ideas, and empathy.
I’ve struggled to articulate my job title over the last 12 years. Learning & Technology Consultant? Speaker? Workshop Leader? Learning Facilitator? Self-Employed Educator? None of these have been good descriptors. I’m excited that I have a new job title–a title I am very happy to have once again: 5th grade teacher.