Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Back To Teaching for Me

I made a big decision recently about my professional life. I decided to leave my current job and return to teaching. It wasn't an easy decision. It meant earning a lot less money, leaving a great group of people and leaving a few projects of which I was very fond. But nonetheless, in the end, it was really the teacher in me who made the final decision:
I miss teaching kids.

So, now I've finally started sharing the news and its beginning to feel not only real, but pretty scary. After all, a lot has changed since I've been in the classroom 5 years ago.


I just shared the news on Twitter and FaceBook and already the responses I'm receiving remind me that I'm never really alone. Already I have friends offering assistance and opportunities for collaboration. The last time I was in the classroom, things were very different. My PLN was confined to the walls of my building, the fibers in my phone or the community where I taught. I'm so looking forward to teaching now on a whole new level.

19 comments:

MomsL8/Jill said...

Welcome back! I made the same decision about 7 years ago, and I haven't regretted it. Now, to tell myself that when I grade! LOL

IMC Guy said...

Good luck! Sounds like you made a tough decision. I can tell you that I frequently miss being a classroom teacher. You will do great!

Martha said...

What a great gift this will be for your students and what a great gift your students will be to you. This will be my 2nd year away from the kids and I know what you mean about missing the students. You've been able to influence a lot of students with the job you have had, but they will so benefit from learning at your side.

Dean Mantz said...

Wow, are those kids going to grow quickly and become real world experts under your guidance! Best wishes and good luck. We all have faith in you and the positives that will come out of the opportunities laying in wait for your new students.

P.S. I hope you are still going to be part of Palm Breeze Cafe.

TJ Shay said...

YAY! Some lucky kids have gained a compassionate and wonderful teacher! The kids are very lucky to be with you!

And, on those times that you get a bit anxious about your return, you will have a bunch of online friends who will cheer you on. We will be firmly planted in your corner.

McTeach said...

I'm sure it couldn't have been an easy decision, but we became teachers because it is a part of who we are, who we were meant to be. I always tell people "The heart wants what it wants." Obviously, your heart wanted to be back with the kids. How fortunate for them to have such an amazing educator to work with.

As for being a classroom teacher with an amazing PLN, I can assure you...nothing beats it!! I know if I'm struggling or having a horrible day, I can hop on Twitter or Plurk at ANY time - day or night - and someone, somewhere in the world will be there to listen and offer support. The same holds true when I have something amazing to share, because those will happen too.

I can't imagine just relying on the people I work with at school for support, we don't really seem to make time for each other like we should. But I can always find strength and support from one thousand other people willing to make time for someone they may not even know. How amazing is that!

The long and the short of it....Congratulations, Lee! Welcome back...we're right behind you!!

Skip Zalneraitis said...

There are children who are going to benefit immensely from your change, AND I'm positive you will, as well. I am in my third career now as a teacher and it is wonderful.

loonyhiker said...

I'm so excited for you! I hope I can still come visit you when I am down there seeing my parents! Maybe I can bring you lunch and hear about your class! :)

Mr. Byrne said...

Lee,
Great move! I know that you'll be awesome and the kids will benefit from having you as their teacher. Best of luck.
Richard

Lona said...

Congratulations, Lee! Your life will be so full of joy and meaningful learning. I'd never have been able to leave the classroom but that step for you was growthful, I'm sure, making you an even better teacher now!

Darren said...

WOW! I am so happy for you....are you going to Waters Edge?? somehow I don't think so......I think it was a good decision....Darren

Lee Kolbert said...

Thank you everyone for your words of encouragement and support. I'm definitely excited about it.

@Darren
Believe it or not, I AM going back to Waters Edge. A lot has changed in the 8 years since I've been there and I have a good feeling about the school now. Too bad you and Shari aren't there, too!

Janelle said...

Congratulations and good luck! I know it must have been a hard decision, but I totally understand about missing the kids.

PNaugle said...

Teaching is one profession where people who love what they are doing don't want a promotion because it means leaving behind what they love - being in the classroom.

Lee, if you loved the classroom five years ago you're going to love it even more now thanks to Web 2.0 technology. Your school district and your future students are so lucky to be getting such as innovative educator. And remember your PLN is only a tweet away.

Good luck and welcome back.

pfanderson said...

I just know you are going to do amazing and inspirational things! Thinking virtual worlds, machinima, podcasts, screencasting ... those kids will be real citizens of the future! You have amazing talent to share. Blessings on BOTH sides!

Colette Cassinelli said...

Congrats Lee! Your students are so lucky to have someone so passionate about learning with them on their adventure. Let's hook up with a classroom project!

Lee Kolbert said...

Thank you, once again, to everyone who commented. I appreciate your kind words and best wishes. I'm sure I'll be reaching out to you as the days progress...

Mari said...

I went back to teaching last year. I can't wait for this school year to get started again!

Aparna Vashisht said...

Congratulations! I've been reading your blog fairly regularly and I am happy for you.

I am sure students will learn so much from you!

Aparna