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Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Lessons Learned...One Strategy For Helping Find A Teaching Position

Lessons Learned…
About Setting Yourself Up To Find A Teaching Job When Teaching Jobs Are Tough To Find

I graduated with a Teaching Degree in December of 1981. The” December” part alone meant, at best, a long term sub position, any grade and any subject K-8, in terms of employment in a school.  The “1981” part compounded the problem, for the early eighties were a time when available teaching jobs in the States were scarce.  Anticipating this early on, I realized my best bet was to gain extensive and diverse experience through volunteering regularly and faithfully in a wide variety of settings with the hopes of securing a letter or two or more of recommendation to strengthen my resume and my understanding.  I had time and passion for people. The organizations and individuals that allowed me to serve them had great patience and generosity of spirit. The list included: Being a summer camp counselor at a MDA residential camp, assisting a music therapist in an adult psychiatric unit, working closely with a blind/deaf university student during a two year window, rocking babies in the hospital so that parents could take much needed breaks, and writing kids’ music to enhance curricular plans in classrooms of teacher friends. As is always the case with serving others, the one who serves receives abundant blessings. My heart was warm and full of rich relational gifts and tender experiential compassion. They all offered kind letters of recommendation.  December of 1981 arrived stirring heart- waves of bittersweetness in the good-byes. Within three months, two strong, excellent job offers appeared each requiring a re-location of no more than four hours from home.