The following was posted yesterday on voicEd.ca. I would love to get contributions from south of the 49th parallel, so if this is something that captures your imagination, I would love to hear from you. You can reach me at email@example.com or on Twitter at stephen_hurley
Feel free to share the invitation with your colleagues and friends.
The first week of August hangs at the very top of summer, the top of the live-long year, like the highest seat of a Ferris wheel when it pauses in its turning
—Natalie Babbitt, Tuck Everlasting, Prologue
This is the week of the summer where most of us who are somehow aligned to the rhythm of the school year pause to reflect. For some of us, the summer is half empty, for others, half full. It’s one of those “top of the Ferris Wheel” moments, and I would like to use this moment to introduce a new voicEd.ca theme for the month of August.
I find myself thinking about those educators who will be starting their careers in a few weeks. Whether it’s a short term contract, or a full time position, thousands will head off to school in September as “the teacher” for the very first time.
And, if the buzz on social media is any indication, emotions are already running high. For the educators among us, it likely isn’t difficult to remember the summer-before-your-first-September.
So, this month on voicEd.ca, I’m inviting you to write an open letter to a first year teacher—a letter from your particular perspective in the system.
If you’re a teacher, it may be a letter welcoming your newest colleague to the profession. If you’re a parent, perhaps it’s a letter that provides some insights about your child, and the type of learning experience that works best for them. If you’re an administrator, perhaps its some tips on settling into school for the first time. If you’re a student, it could be some thoughts about what is important to you in the year to come. If you’re involved in teacher education, maybe you have a few reminders that you would like your newest graduates to remember once they get settled into their new role. Even if you hang out around the edges of the formal school system, you likely have some important things to share!
And if you’re a new teacher, your voice is welcome as well. We would love to hear why you’re excited about this opportunity and the work that you have chosen to do. Tell us what brings you here, what your hopes and aspirations are for the work that you are undertaking, and the ways that we can help you live up to those dreams!
Whatever your perspective, you likely have some important things to communicate to those that are just beginning their journey. And, I’m sure that your insights and ideas will be valuable for us all to hear!
So, as the Ferris Wheel pauses at the top of another summer season, here’s your invitation to create something for those new educators who are busy imagining, creating and anticipating their very first September experience as a teacher.
If you’re new to voicEd.ca and haven’t signed up to be an author, now is a perfect opportunity. Just drop me a line at firstname.lastname@example.org. You can also find me on twitter at stephen_hurley.
Your submissions can take the form of a blog entry, a comment on another entry, a podcast, a graphic—whatever mode that is most effective for you.
I’m looking forward to your contributions!