I'm now entering my third year being out of the classroom. Three years. In some ways, it feels like forever ago, but in other ways, it feels like just yesterday that I had students of my own.
It's hard, sometimes, working at the district level. I miss kids. I miss those relationships that only develop when you see them every day. And I miss teaching itself - the art of crafting a lesson, knowing your learners, and connecting with kids in that moment!
I also worry about becoming irrelevant. About losing touch with what life is like when you are teaching kiddos day in and day out. I fear that I might forget the planning, the grading, the parent emails, the hallway duty, and the never-ending stream of wondering how you could help your kids even more.
But then I remember: Once a teacher, always a teacher. A couple of weeks ago, I got to teach a Sunday School lesson at church (to kindergarten/1st graders), and it was awesome. One of those moments where you feel like you have their attention, they are engaged and excited to learn, and everything is just clicking! And then, this week, due to ice and snow and bad roads, I got to be an emergency sub for a couple of hours (until all of the teachers could make it to school). It was so much fun to be teaching kids again! It made me remember that:
1) I still love this,
2) I can still do it (even if I am a little rusty), and
3) I never want to lose touch with teaching.
I'm a firm believer that, no matter where you are in education, it is important to be in schools and important to be in classrooms. That's where the rubber hits the road! I've tried to keep that lens and spend time in classrooms throughout my time in a district position, and I hope I can continue to find little ways to exercise my teaching heart as well!