This is an open letter to those teachers who, like myself, have been teaching for a while and can see the end of their career coming.
I am here to share with you my insight after teaching for 22 years. Perhaps you feel the same way as I do or perhaps you have a ways to go in your career. Either way, I hope you gain something from this letter and leave a little more inspired and comfortable in your own teaching.
You have been teaching long enough to see trends come and go and then come back again. What is new to some you recognize as a re-packaging of something that was "new" earlier in your career. This is your opportunity to step up and share your knowledge and let people learn from your experiences. Resist the temptation to point out that this trend, whatever it may be, is old news. Take the lead.
You have been teaching long enough to also know that you don't need to jump on the bandwagon of every new thing that comes down the line. You have experience on your side and "know" what works for kids. If there is a choice, pick and choose what you know will work best for kids and quietly leave it at that.
You have been teaching long enough that you can see that retirement date in the not so distant future. For me it is under 10 years now. I have 22 years of teaching under my belt. I believe that is quite an accomplishment. As each new year dawns I hope you feel the same excitement of setting up your room and preparing for a new group of students. I hope you continue to love coming to work each day and teaching and learning with your students. You are at a point in your career when you can see the end but you are enjoying the ride until you get there. Embrace the journey!
Click on any of the links below to visit the blog post about each of these other teachers. Chances are you'll be in one of these shoes sooner than you realize!
~An Open Letter to a New Teacher
~An Open Letter to the Teacher in the Prime of her Career
~An Open Letter to a Teacher in a Rut
~Open Letter to the Retired Teacher