Friday, June 20, 2008

new phase of teaching

today, I am inspired - yet again - by my wonderful new teaching job for next year. Not only do I have a team (a TEAM!) to work with, which I never had at my other job, the people in the team are working on their professionalism, curriculum, assessments, and making sure the general flow from music classroom to music classroom is getting smoother all the time. AND I have a wonderful co-elementary teacher to work with. We just spent the morning chatting and trading ideas back and forth and realizing how eerily similar we are - and it was absolutely wonderful. I feel like I have not only gained a job I can learn from and grow in, but there is no a wonderful friend that I can talk to and feel comfortable with while I am there. It was one of those moments when you realize as you're talking to someone, that this is someone that you could be friends with for a while - it just clicks. OK, must not wax poetic about that...just feeling so relieved to have someone to talk to more regularly again.

So, this district actually cares about, supports, AND funds their music department - so nice. The building is pretty much brand new, and as a district, they support all kinds of things that I am very much either into or interested in supporting. For instance, they do the Metco program, which buses in students from poorer communities to give them a better education there. We spent the whole morning going over curriculum for our music department and cleaning up areas that are vague or indistinct. And it was wonderful, because these people wanted to do it...asked for the time to do it...not doing it because they were forced to from some higher power. We did curriculum work at my old job - it consisted of me making a curriculum map on my own, no one checking it, and being forced to put it in a binder that no one ever looked at again. Basically, the curriculum coordinator that the state hired for our district said we should do this, so everyone did it to get them off our backs, and there was never any accountability involved at my level at all, not to mention the complaining!!

I am grateful for my time at my old job, that they gave me my start, and I have met some wonderful people that I will keep in touch with. However, I left there feeling discouraged and meaningless, and am SO excited to be somewhere else where my colleagues care about what I'm doing and are willing to work as a team - as schools should.

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