Friday, June 9, 2017

Back in the Saddle

I'm currently sitting poolside (as the kids swim) getting started on reading for my NEW TEACHING ASSIGNMENT!

I posted here about how I really hoped to get back into teaching this year. I transferred my credential to Arizona, cleared my fingerprints and just started applying. I've had a credential in 4 states at this point. I was pretty picky about being in the same district as my kids for proximity and school schedule reasons. We're also not in dire need of more income (though it's always really nice!) and if I couldn't land a job in the district, I would just find myself subbing until it happened.

My flexibility has changed considerably since having kids and the thought of going full time with two small kids is already overwhelming. I didn't have much to worry about, turns out, because I landed 3 interviews within a week and ended up interviewing from our empty guest room, sitting on a couple pillows with my tripod and iPhone propped on a moving box. Our furniture was out of the house and the first two interviews were done via FaceTime. I would later cancel the third interview for a school that was likely the worst fit for a tech-savvy teacher like myself. I don't believe in top down, teacher directed learning. I most definitely would've been a phony in that environment. Plus, it meant a real commute of over 10 miles. #nothanks

Place where dreams are made.
As luck would have it, my first and second interviews were 20 minutes apart and I felt like I couldn't have done better at them. It proved to be true because I received a call 1.5 hours later offering me my first choice position, first choice grade level and first choice school in the entire district. It's a STEAM focused school, 2.2 miles away from the school my kids will attend and only 4 miles from our house. I didn't get the second job, which also baffles me because I was so prepared and felt that was probably the best interview of my life, even having read their PTA meeting minutes and quoting their programs. It's all water under the bridge because they weren't my first choice either and at the time of finding out I didn't pass their interview, I had already received and returned my contract for my first choice school.

Pinch me. (Okay, pinch me again because Arizona salary is 48th worst in the nation). Teaching is semi-public servant role and all fueled by the love of learning and student relationships. Despite a MA+22 and years of teaching experience, I'm getting paid worse than my first teaching assignment at age 23, but regardless.

I'm officially on payroll starting July 25th and kids start August 7th. Other than feeling utterly overwhelmed by the juggling of kids and working and basically being a first year teacher again, I'm over the moon. I'm also back to being a student myself, as I just signed up for a course focused on STEAM teaching to bump me up to the next pay scale and to get me back into the teaching mindset.

Poolside, right now, I'm starting with STEAM Makers, followed by at least 5 more books on using Google Classroom. I feel like I started teaching too early. Like, now schools have finally arrived to teaching the way I have always wanted to be part in designing. I have a lot to learn, but here's to getting started.

Updates on life: It's a warm one here, folks. We are totally loving having a pool in our backyard. We spent 3 nights moving things from the moving truck after the kids were in bed and that proved to be the smartest move. No more boxes are around and we're feeling mostly normal with internet and a full fridge of food, creating ways to avoid turning on the stove for dinner. Which means, we also bought our first gas grill and even had our toaster oven outside to avoid heating the house. Living the Sonoran Desert dream.


Kari Wagner said... [Reply to comment]


Caroline said... [Reply to comment]

I just love that you LIVE in my home state! I miss the sunsets and the mountains. Not the heat. Even if it is a dry heat.

I think (sadly/pathetically) Arizona has moved UP! I think it used to be 49th worst paid state for teachers. My mom has been teaching in Arizona for about 30 years!

Sarah said... [Reply to comment]

Congrats on the job!

And summer is all about salads in our house. Tomato, peach, and mozzarella salad. Bean salad. Marinated cucumber salad. Oh, and ice cream.