Monday, October 28, 2013

When I Taught, Part 2 (see Part 1, 6.10.2013)

After my initial teaching experience in my hometown, the place where I spent a good portion of my own money providing food, school supplies, haircuts and such to those of my students who needed these things, I found myself in a completely different educational environment.  I landed a teaching position with the Muroc Unified School District at Edwards Air Force Base in California where my husband was assigned to the Judge Advocate General's office, his first assignment as a JAG officer.

The school building I was assigned to, on the base, was brand new and housed only sixth and seventh grade classes.  I was part of a team teaching effort and taught the sixth grade social studies/sixth and seventh grade girls physical education component.  Everything I needed or wanted was either housed in the building or could be brought in within a day.  My students were world travelers  by virtue of their parents being stationed at Air Force bases all over the world.  They came to my class armed with knowledge gained from living in other countries and around the United States.

All were well dressed, articulate, eager to share their experiences.  It was exciting to teach kids who didn't have hunger issues or all those issues that come with broken homes, low income or other family problems. I didn't have a plethora of paperwork to do.  I was able to be extremely creative with projects designed to give my students a reason to be enthusiastic about what I was teaching them.  It's the experience I expected to have when I became an elementary school teacher.

That teaching experience at Edwards had the kind of educational atmosphere every public school in the United States should provide.  But that was an exception.  My first teaching job in my home town and this one at Edwards were worlds apart in every sense.  

After Edwards, I took time off to have our sons and I stayed out of teaching until they got into school.  My next teaching experiences were different, weird, and unusual to say the least but that's for another time.

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