Saturday, August 04, 2007

Sunday Scribblings: Decision for a New Year

Did you know that August first marks a new year? It does for me. You see, as a teacher, the school switch turns itself on. This is a good thing. I believe the year the switch doesn't go on is the year to retire.

August is about new ideas, and goals. My good friends have been instructed to get a shepherds’s hook and pull me aside the year I return to school without new ideas and goals for the year.

This is my thirty-fourth year of teaching. I am watching friends and colleagues retire. It is expected that I teach until sixty-five on my retirement plan in the state of Washington. That means about eleven more years. I want to stay fresh, I want to avoid "retirement envy". So I made a decision.

I am pursuing the National Board Certification for Library Media. A friend in Idaho planted a seed (probably unknowingly) followed by a conversation with another library media specialist who is on board to take it. She is taking it and another library media specialist is taking it. Our district has developed a wonderful support process for those seeking National Board Certification.

It means putting my beliefs, my teaching style and knowledge about students out there for review. It means six hours a month with my peers in a cadre to prepare for the certification. I have to produce a portfolio, sample student work, and videos of my teaching. And come spring 2008, I will take an exam.

I couldn't fall asleep the day I made the decision to do this. My mind would not turn off with excitement of a challenge. I knew it was the right decision for me. I guess the switch hasn't turned off yet nor do I need the shepherd's hook to pull me away.

What decision have you made lately? To read about more deciders, click here.

14 comments:

Sarah Amick said...

So nice to hear that you are still ready for learning even after 34 years. You are still evolving and changing. That is a very cool thing!

Becca said...

How lucky your students are, to have a teacher with this much enthusiasm, even after 34 years! And congratulations on your decision to puruse another goal for yourself ~always a good thing at any age.

I work as an assistant choir director/accompanist for high school, and I'm well acquainted with the August countdown to school ;)

Great post!

Tammy said...

Wow! Jone you are a dedicated teacher that has made a big decision...woohoo! You ROCK!

Good luck as I cheerlead from CA!!!

HUGS

paris parfait said...

Jone, what a wonderful path to embark on! Congratulations on continuing to challenge yourself. Your students are so lucky to have you.

khambagirl said...

I think that you made a great decision! I also think that you must be a really great teacher!

khambagirl said...

I think that you must be a great teacher! What a great decision you have made!!!

January said...

Now that's a great decision! You seem almost giddy about this new path so it sounds as if you've made the right choice.

Jane Poe (aka Deborah) said...

Brilliant decision Jone. Your mind is meant to be lit with excitement ... bravo to you for feeding it. xx, JP

Redness said...

Your brave & generous decision will impact on future generations -congratulations!

Remiman said...

Jone,
Good for you! Staying involved, striving to learn and willingness to change....those are qualities of a young mind. I see retirement as for old folks!
rel

Jone said...

Thank you all for your kind words of support. I am sure I will ppost progress and challenges.

gautami tripathy said...

Learning is a never ending process. I recently enrolled myself for an Art Appreciation course. I am enjoying it very much.

Tanaya said...

What a fantastic decision!

I am your partner in the Create A Connection Swap this month. I'd love to get to know you a bit...and to know where you'd loe to travel to more than anywhere on earth...

Please email me at tanaya(at)gmail(dot)com so that we can exchange addresses. Thanks, Tanaya

Inland Empire Girl said...

I see we have something in common. I also teach in Washington and am starting my 31st year. I opted out of the Nat. Board Cert. because I am so rural. I do try to keep fresh though. Congrats on doing it this next year. I will be eager to hear how it goes. Good Sunday Scribbling.