After returning from my leave of absence last academic year, I was granted my first choice, a Kindergarten teacher position, and I was ELATED!!! I have taught UPK (Universal Pre Kindergarten) and I was also the Director of a Pre School so I knew what to expect, although the Department of Education can be an entirely different animal. Working with a co-teacher (we are a ICT-Integrated Co-Teaching Class) also brings its own share of ups and downs so from start to (almost) finish, it has been a VERY interesting year!
Choosing to teach Kindergarten this year was a no-brainer for me. I’ve now had the experience of my oldest child in a testing grade so I knew I did NOT want to teach a testing grade. That would mean I would literally be immersed in test prep 24/7 and I did not want that! One of the benefits of teaching Kindergarten was it allowed me to see and also assist my youngest in what he needed to know since he is in Pre K this year. The majority of the work we did in class, he was able to do as well with me at home. It gave me a sense of where he was cognitively (yes, like most mothers, I do assess my children at home).
What I did worry about was the “Stepping Up Ceremony” and when it would take place. You see, many people say and THINK that “teaching” is the ideal job for a parent because we have the holidays off like our children or because we have an entire summer off as well. The thing that many don’t realize is that when there are class trips, we can’t attend like the other moms because we are in our own classroom! When “Classroom Mom” is being chosen, I just have to toss the paper aside because the majority of the time, the activities take place when I am in front of my own students so how could I even attempt to manage that one?
What I had not anticipated was BOTH, yes I said BOTH, stepping up ceremonies taking place on the same exact day!! Yes, I mean my son’s stepping up ceremony is the same exact day as my class’s celebration of graduation. Are you serious? Is this real life?
I now have to make a choice. I have to make this choice–is this really happening? There is no way that I can make it to both of them because they are at the same time and they are taking place on entirely opposite sides of Brooklyn, NY. Would I be considered a HORRIBLE teacher if I did not attend my own classroom ceremony? Would my son ever forgive me for not attending his first and only stepping up ceremony from Pre Kindergarten? Will he be able to understand my duties as a schoolteacher?
Now, would any other “non teacher” mom be caught in a predicament like this? Is teaching still looking so hot and super convenient to you as a parent?
Sound Off: What would you do if you were in my shoes?