Who is this K. Trace who thinks she knows stuff?
I’m currently in my 18th year teaching. My husband’s career has moved us around often. In my first 10 years as an educator, I taught in five schools and I never spent more than three years in one building. I’ve been “that new teacher” five times! I know what it is like to walk into a building and have no clue how it functions. That’s why I wrote A Wannabe Teacher’s Guide: Getting Hired, Having Fun, & Staying Sane.
I’ve taught eleventh grade students reading on a fourth grade level and been expected to get them to pass the state standardized tests. I’ve also taught college level classes and had students go on to Princeton and Yale. One year, I taught five classes with five different preps: Mass Communications, Newspaper, Yearbook, English 12, and Communications Technology. It’s no wonder I almost had a nervous breakdown, but I survived and I continue to love teaching because I’ve found ways to stay sane and have fun in the classroom despite all the pressure on educators.
I don’t tell you the following to toot my own horn, but rather to explain why you should give any weight to what I have to say. I graduated magna cum laude from The College of William and Mary with a double major in English and Psychology. I then went on to graduate with a Postgraduate Master’s Degree in Secondary English Education from The University of Virginia’s Curry School of Education (one of the best in the country—see US News and World Report mentioned later). I have interviewed for exactly seven positions as my husband and I moved around Virginia and Maryland. I have been offered every single teaching position I have ever interviewed for. In two instances, I was offered a position at multiple schools and got to take my pick.
I became Department Chair in my current school after being there only two years and I was teacher of the year in my fourth year. I went on to become a top five finalist for Citywide Teacher of the Year in a district that boasts over 10,000 employees. In 2018, I achieved National Board Certification.
Am I a perfect teacher, no. Far from it. I am still learning every day, but I’ve grown a great deal over the past 13 years and I’m writing this because I want to share the knowledge I’ve gained with you. Each teacher walks into their first classroom on the first day of school only once.
You only have to be a brand new teacher one time. If you want to be ready check here often.