I'm officially back to work in the school system. Surprisingly, I'm already averaging 2.5 days a week. Wow! I worked all five last week...but I took all five off the week before :)
It's fun to be back, which is good, because the first two years weren't stellar. My first year was all out frightening! I didn't just get a call for the elementary school - there were 15! I never knew if I was going to show up at the right school or the right time. And I was SO desperate for jobs that I accepted any gig. I wanted to find a good fit for myself so I could enjoy my time.
Last year was better. The best thing that happened for me was accepting a three week job for a high school special ed co-teacher. I had one study hall to myself; the rest of the day I was in classes where others taught and I helped. I primarily helped the E.I. kids (emotionally impared, i.e. ADD, OCD, etc). The most helpful part of that was seeing how the other teachers handled discipline. By observing what they tolerated and how they handled the kids I gained a new confidence in myself. Ill-mannered students no longer frighten me...I frighten them :)
This year has been fun. By now I have 10-12 teachers who specially request me in their classrooms. This is great because I know how the teachers like things done so I can keep the class going the way the regular teacher would. Plus, in the elementary and middle schools these teachers often have the same kids from year to year. When the students remember me it helps 100X more. They know I can't be walked on. They know I know the rules. They tremble because they know I'll hold them to the rules. It's pretty cool :) I'm no longer babysitting. I can now teach the kids and help them with their work. I feel like I'm accomplishing something.
Of course this also means my writing is taking a backseat. Yeah, right. I did nothing this summer. I meant to, but I failed. Summers are too tempting. Sunshine is too evocative. Writing didn't happen. If anything, I'm doing more now because I have to keep a set schedule. It's great!
So I'm back in school. I like it :) And still...I'm not going to get my teaching certificate. I like subbing.