Hello! My name is Rachel and this is my very first blog post ever! Eeeeek! It's so exciting! Currently I teach 5th grade in a public school that focuses on the arts. I also teach English online for VIPKID. I love being a teacher! I am pretty sure that I have the best job in the world. Not only do I get to integrate the arts into curriculum, but I get to teach in China almost every day!
Being a teacher has been definitely been a journey! Reflection and flexibility are key to survival. This teaching thing is no joke. I would have to say that love for my kiddos, collaboration with other brilliantly generous professionals and sheer madness have carried me through. I began my teaching career wanting to be an ESL teacher. My passion was to encourage and teach diversity. Soon afterwards, I began working in an extended resource room with some seriously AMAZING women. My goal changed to making sure that education was accessible to all kiddos regardless of ability. THEN I started teaching 5th grade in an art school. It changed everything (again!). This was a deal breaker for me. Being a general classroom teacher is the hardest and most rewarding thing that I have every done, besides raising my fabulous children that is. I came to realize that my true passion (for now) is teaching diversity, ensuring that education is accessible and rigorous for all kiddos, and collaborating effectively with others. All of the above. I kinda want it all. There is always a little something to learn from everyone and I want to soak it all in. The next endeavor on my list is pursuing a Masters in Gifted and Talented Education. At that point all my hopes and dreams for my journey as an educator will have come true. Right?
Of course the most fabulous part of my job is my students. Teaching 5th grade is pretty much where it's at for me! I love that I can have rich conversations and use sarcasm ALL DAY LONG. They get it. It's the best! I teach in an arts based school and we are encouraged to integrate art into all areas of our curriculum. I love the challenge of figuring out ways to integrate art (many times more than one type of art) into subjects such as Science and Math. It keeps my students engaged and learning. I have to admit that it is not always a smashing success. I cannot tell you how many times I have started integrating arts and had to change my plans mid-lesson. Fortunately, it usually works out! I am always pleasantly surprised and grateful for what children can add to a lesson, what I can learn from them, and of course with the amazing art they create!
I also truly love online teaching. My students in China are AMAZING. Many of them take online classes with VIPKID several days a week in addition to their regular school day. Those kiddos have some grit. VIPKID is an online teaching company based out of China. I teach 3-4 classes in the morning before I go to my public school classroom. It can be really difficult finding a side hustle to make extra money as a teacher. Anyone that is a teacher understands that it (teaching) can be life consuming (in a fabulous way!) There is generally not a ton of extra time. VIPKID was perfect! I am able to teach in the morning before my darling children wake up and make the extra money that I need.
According to Forbes, it is currently ranked #1 for Work From Home Jobs!!! Check it out!
In addition to teaching, I recently started selling resources on Teachers Pay Teachers. I have always made things for my public and online classrooms and finally decided to take the plunge and start a store on TPT. It has been an awesome experience! I have learned far more than I expected AND worked much harder than I expected. It has been so worth it. Currently, most of my resources are VIPKID related, but I am slowly plugging in my 5th grade resources. I am looking forward to getting my integrated art lessons shared!