I’ve wanted to be a teacher since I was in second grade at the Ohio Street School in Huron, Ohio.
It took a long time before I found my niche as a teacher…. I started my career as a K-12 Music Specialist in the Upper Connecticut Valley area of New Hampshire. Traveling between 2 towns and 12 grade levels just wasn’t the career I had envisioned for myself. I don’t know what I had envisioned — I was so green that I didn’t even write lesson plans!
I left teaching after a year and worked, first as a music salesperson in a large music store — you know, selling marching band arrangements of Help Me Make It Through The Night — and then decided if I was ever going to have any hope of living independently I needed some more training.
That’s where going to Katherine Gibbs — of white gloves and nylon stocking fame — came into focus. After Katie Gibbs, I worked as a secretary in a large architectural firm in Harvard Square and then as a bookkeeper for a start up software company. With delusions of getting a Harvard MBA, I took the GMAT — and failed it miserably. Meanwhile the software company started to falter and I took another look at what I had wanted to do all along – teach kids in a classroom!
In the late 80s I got my M.Ed. from University of Lowell — that’s UMass to you — and started teaching for real. This time I made sure I was writing those lesson plans 🙂 I’ve been working in a medium size urban school district ever since; I love my classroom and the energy the students bring to it. Even on days when the energy is more than I would like (read day before any vacation), the laughter, tears, hardwork and challenges make it worth every minute of time put into it.
Of course, all good things eventually come to their end. June 2015 will start a new phase in my life as I retire from classroom teaching. My students are always asking me what I want to do next year and, outside of take some deep breaths once I get off the carousel, I’m not sure. I hope that I can continue to work with students and families in some capacity, but I also know the door is opening for new adventures.
So, as you can see, my career path has come around full circle. I wouldn’t have it any other way.