Friday, June 27, 2008

Childhood Dream Come True

For as long as I can remember, I wanted to be a teacher. Growing up, I subjected my sister, along with every neighborhood child I could round up, to endless hours in the "classroom."

The initial classroom was the metal storage shed towards the back of our property. It was blazing hot in summer, had the potential to house bees and other critters, and thus only allowed for brief teaching sessions.

Next up was a huge spool that must have held utility cable at one point. I have no idea where it came from, but a doorway was cut out, it was painted inside and out, and it became the place where I taught school, along with occasional classes taught by my friend Misti.

After we outgrew the spool and it found a home elsewhere (a/k/a the dump), smaller, more formal classes were taught on our enclosed back porch. It was complete with a real chalkboard, an official pen-like chalk holder, and two real student desks. Unfortunately, we weren't often allowed to run the air conditioner out on the back porch, and so school days couldn't last long there either.

I guess never having had an ideal classroom kept the dream alive. At least long enough to mark down on my freshman high school English teacher's form that I wanted to be a math professor when I graduated.

And then real world numbers started speaking. At first softly whispering how one can't live on the salary that a teacher, or even a professor, makes. And then shouting louder. Loud enough to pursue other career fields.

But God has a funny way of often straightening out my path when I haven't allowed Him to use me for the purpose He wired me for. And this is the week He chose to surprise me with a path correction.

On Monday, out of nowhere, a contract employee who works full-time for an "institution of higher learning" asked me if I would be interested in teaching as an adjunct faculty member one afternoon a week in the fall. Surprisingly, I heard myself reply that I would be interested. He gave me some of the details and then asked me to set up a time to meet with the academic dean. I did that today and will begin teaching August 19. I will not be teaching math, but more along the lines of writing and speaking, which is even better since I haven't officially "done" any higher level math in years.

Though I'm really excited, I don't feel the least bit confident in this new endeavor. I haven't taught grown-ups before, and my days of teaching Sunday school to four year olds showed me that I'm not exactly one to hold people's attention very long. I'm trusting that God will equip me for this task if I continue to lean on Him and seek insight and wisdom on how to creatively teach this class. My goal is to be more interesting than Ben Stein in Ferris Bueller's Day Off. By God's grace, hopefully I will realize that goal and come out on the other side of this twelve-week adventure with some good experience and some new insights about myself as I learn through the teaching process.

10 comments:

spaghettipie said...

hooray! Congratulations!

Momma Bean said...

Excited for you. What a great opportunity for you. Congrats!!!

kasogayle said...

That's awesome!! You are going to do great, I have no doubt!!! Keep us up to date on how it goes!!!

Renae said...

Alyssa, I am so proud of you! You will a great teacher. I have full confidence in you!

Anonymous said...

You're going to be awesome as a teacher. You're well-suited for it.

I've always wanted to do this myself. The occasions that I have have been very rewarding. You'll love it.

"Bluebonnet in the snow" said...

SP, MB, KG, R, & A - Thanks for all the well wishes. It's going to be quite the adventure.

michelle said...

Congrats! I am sure you will be great.

Krista said...

Wow, Alyssa!! Amazing opportunity. Can't wait to hear more about this!

Madison Richards said...

Wow. What a cool turn of events! I wish you the best of luck in your endeavors

Sarah said...

That is so exciting!! We need to talk because I am also going to be an adjunct instructor at a local "institution of higher learning" this Fall and I'm super nervous. I wonder if it's the same place???