I have always known I wanted to be a teacher.
I briefly toyed with persuing a career in acting or singing, but realized that there was no way I could live with the constant rejection that would come with auditioning all the time. I figured that I could always do community theater if I wanted, but I needed to go to school to become a teacher.
Finding an elementary teaching job when I graduated college was near impossible. I sent out applications and resumes to school districts as far as an hour away, but got nothing. I realized that I would need to get known within different schools if I was ever going to get hired, so I signed up with the subbing service so I could be a day-to-day sub all over the county and get my foot in the door.
After two months I kind of happened upon a long term sub position by being in the right place at the right time - a teacher was in an accident, I was her sub, it was up in the air as to when she would be back, I started doing the plans, and after 60 days (I think) I was officially offered the long term sub position. When she finally was able to come back to work, I had to go back to day-to-day subbing, which was sooo tough. I had gotten to really like going to the same class each day, working with the same kids, planning lessons and seeing them through. Going back to keeping my fingers crossed to see if I would get that early morning phone call was hard.
I did finally get hired in that same school district for the next school year and I continued teaching there for the next seven and a half years. I left teaching full time when I went on bedrest while pregnant with my twins and have not been back since.
While staying home with my children, I first watched my sister's son (a year younger than my boys) and eventually my sister's daughter (two years younger than my daughter) as a way to bring in more income. I also started running a Mom's Morning Out from my house for two mornings a week. And as the kids started getting older, I moved on to teaching preschool at the school where my children (and niece and nephew) were attending, which is where I am right now. I teach Pre-K (3s and 4s) from 9-1.
There are so many great things I can say about teaching preschool. It's a fabulous school, I have the opportunity to create my own curriculum (as long as it follows the early learning standards of the state), I am able to be home an hour or so before my kids get home which helps me get some house stuff taken care of, and I love what I'm doing. On the other hand, I miss teaching elementary school.
And so I need to start moving towards that. At this time my professional certification has lapsed. Certified teachers in my state are required to complete a total of 180 hours of continuing education (equivalent to two graduate level classes) every five years. I easily accomplished this when I first started teaching and was in the classroom full time, but after those first five years, life kind of got in the way and I have not been able to continue taking classes like I used to. Which means goal #1 is to complete a total of 120 hours of continuing education. And figure out how to do that in the most inexpensive way.
Goal #2 will be to update my resume. I know I probably won't be able to simply start teaching in my own classroom come September, so I will need to begin the arduous task of applying for a teaching job once again.
Goal #3 will then be to fill out applications. I heard that most districts now have online applications now, so in theory, it will be easier this time around. We'll see.
Goal #4 will probably be to sign up with a subbing service once again. Sigh.
And goal #5 is going to be figuring out how we will pay for the potential lack of income if I do not get consistent subbing jobs.
I would love to be able to just jump from my preschool classroom into a Kindergarten classroom in the school district where I used to teach (where my children currently go). I know it won't be that easy. But at least I know what I have to do to get there.