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Monday, February 17, 2014

My giddy, blissful home preschool dreams

   

Well, it's official; my mind has been made up. As soon as college is over and my degree is in hand, as soon as I can get my 1940's cottage home up to code, and get permission to run a home preschool from my home, that is my plan. As I posted before people will surely question why I bothered going to school and racking up student loans just to run an in-home preschool, and here is why: unless God reveals to me something else in life that compares, nothing, not any other job I have ever had makes me feel the happiness and excitement and sheer giddiness I feel when I imagine my home daycare/preschool. :)

  I love all the things about it...setting it up...being my own boss...decorating....shopping for the items for the kids....planning the lessons and learning centers....making the schedules....and most of all, being with the kids!  I think of all my jobs so far my time at the daycare really prepared me for the possibility of be able to do this, and showed me how much I really enjoy the preschool age group.



   I began to dream about the idea of a home daycare years before we stopped homeschooling. And I've never stopped. Its all I think about. I draw the rooms, write out the schedules, buy toys at the Goodwill and save them in my basement "just in case". I take my college education courses and alongside them, preschool business trainings. I think about my daycare/preschool in the shower...as I drive...when I lay down to sleep. I can't get the thoughts out of my head and nothing else really excites me the way these dreams do.

   So feel free to follow me on Pinterest and keep up with my boards. I have plenty of them pertaining to education:

  • learning is fun
  • the heart of teaching
  • cute and clever classroom idea
  • classroom photo gallery
  • my preschool daze
  • future dream preschool
  • classroom behaviors/SPED


  No matter what age level you educate or where, you're sure to find something of use in my pins. But if you, like me, love to work work with preschool children or dream about your own daycare/preschool business, make sure to visit me here often as I share ideas, hopes, and links to helpful sites.






Saturday, February 15, 2014

Longing for home

  I have recently had a change in my life that affects this blog...I am no longer a preschool teacher at a daycare. I went back into the school system as a SPED aid. I get to work in my daughter's elementary school which is fabulous! I am really going to enjoy having the same schedule as my children. And the staff is so friendly that I have felt a warm welcome right from the start. :)

 After today I may not be writing much in the way of preschool...at least not for a few years, which brings me to today's topic.

  I have about one year left to go with WGU TN before I become a certified teacher. My degree in pre-k through 3rd grade will enable me to teach in the public school system. Which is what the typical course of action would be as a college graduate with a teacher license. It is also what is expected by friends and family  all around me. Why go to school to become a teacher unless you're going to actually become a teacher? And teacher I shall be, although the form it may someday take might surprise a few people.

  While the thought of teaching in a public school classroom makes me happy, the thought of having my own in-home daycare/preschool has been my DREAM career for years, and it makes me utterly filled with sheer JOY just to imagine it!!!

   Even when my family homeschooled, all during that wonderful eleven years when my husband was blessed with a good income and good health, I always thought that I might need a back-up plan should I ever not be able to homeschool my children. I thanked the Lord daily for His provision and always prayed that should one door close He would open another. I often imagined that the other door would be a daycare; then as years went by that dream evolved into a full-on preschool taught in a cozy home setting. I began to imagine how to transform my home to blend a business and my family; I looked at the homeschool curriculum we used and began to see how it could be tweaked to be a wonderful tool for a pre-k setting; I began to sketch ideas and buy up supplies. I scoured the internet for vidoes and photos and training. I took the popular Start a Preschool training by Joy Anderson and even went on to take another course called Open a Preschool. I listened and took notes and learned so much.

 When my husband became so sick that I could no longer homeschool I thought my world was ending. But then I ended up with a wonderful job in a local daycare and started this blog. And I was happy, very very happy. And I learned so much from that job about how a daycare runs and what is expected in a business setting. But my heart still longed to be home. I knew God had a plan for me and it appears that the daycare was part of  that plan, but what about my dreams? How did it all fit together?

 Now three years later I am in the school system; I am exactly where I need to be to become a teacher. I am learning hands-on how the classrooms of today work. I see the teachers in action, with their brightly-lit classrooms and their smiling faces, and their calm demeanors as they work to educate our children. I admire them; the job looks very difficult and at times demanding. And even in the difficulty the thought of doing what they do makes me happy. But the thought of teaching in my own preschool is where my heart really lies.I still long to be home.

 I just can't get past it; I've tried. I've tried to talk myself out of it over and over. in fact, in my present situation and without a remodel of my home, it wouldn't even be possible. Starting a business is hard I tell myself...I might not succeed...and having an in-home daycare/preschool is something that affects the whole family. Time and time again I've started to sale or donate my daycare stuff. But it sits in labeled tubs in my basement, waiting, hoping. I hear my own brain and the thoughts of others that will come. Yes, it affects everyone. Yes, it takes over the house. Yes, a 4-year degree is a bit excessive and not really required in my state to own a preschool at home. How will you make profit What happens if no one enrolls their children? Yes, the school system has insurance and a retirement plan.I have no business skills. I would be crazy to not teach in a traditional school setting and "waste" that degree and all the money it took to get it. The thoughts and fear of potential failure nag at me.

  But the bottom line is I want to be blissfully, crazily, overjoyed and drenched in utter happiness as I wake each morning, ready to start my work day. And with all my heart, I believe without a shadow of a doubt that this is the path God has been leading me down for years now. Everything along the way, every experience gained from homeschooling to daycare to my new SPED job...they have all just been stepping stones to my future. God put the right people, the right leadership in front of me to help me see the ins and outs, the pros and cons of each scenario.

  So I will finish my schooling. I will be the best student I know how to be. I will also be the best SPED aid I know how to be at my current job. Someday I will be the best student teacher I know how to be to finish my degree. And unless God changes my path, I will never stop dreaming of that day when my old fixer-upper house is ready and the doors are opened wide, when the rooms are freshly painted and the cubbies are stocked and the lesson plans are ready. Where the art table smells of new Crayolas and the science table is filled with rocks and gems and a plant and a fish and a hermit crab.Where the dramatic play area is stocked with princess clothes and cowboy clothes and a fruit stand with play money. Where the reading center is cozy and the scent of the new books lures the kids in to cuddle and read under the abc tree. Where the activity table awaits with measuring spoons and recipes and ingredients for a cooking activity.....you'll find me sitting in the middle of a  playroom painted the color of fresh lemons, with sock-footed preschoolers all around me singing Five Little Monkeys on the circle time rug. Come join us for the next song...it will be a blast and a dream come true. :)

 Until then,


Wednesday, January 22, 2014

off topic; make some cash online doing what you've been doing all along

If you're online often and would like to gradually earn some cash in easy ways, doing stuff you probably already do, like net surfing, watching videos, and playing games, then head over to my other blog and check out some cool ideas:

http://noplacelikehome-lynn.blogspot.com/2014/01/cool-ways-to-earn-money-online-doing.html


    I have been so busy with college this term. I have had to just about put blogging on the back burner (along with meals, housework, family time, TV, leisure reading, Pinterest  *gasp*, you know, all the things I actually enjoy doing in life). It's been really hard and I am not doing well in any area which tells me I have again bitten off more than I can chew (this is an issue I wrestle with). I truly did not mean to do this again. It's just that way back in August I needed more work hours. I figured while I was waiting on them to pick up I could help out more at church--other teachers had family and work issues and needed a break-- which translated into teaching not one class (as I had prayed about) but three. I was still good with this. Then bam! More work hours! Yay! A blessing! Then around Sept. my college mentor says I need to add in just one more class to be considered a full-time student and get my financial aid. Ok, I thought, now my legs are shaking a bit. By November I was thinking What have I done?! And by January I was in melt-down mode. Now I am in recovery-mode. I have had to temporarily drop my Wednesday nights at church and volunteer to go home early a few times at work. I have had to cram and study like a maniac, but it is finally working.

     All these things are GOOD things. Nothing wrong with work...it pays the bills. Nothing wrong with church service...it grows us closer to God. Nothing wrong with college...it helps us to hopefully reach our full workplace potential.  But being a full-time mom, full-time preschool teacher, full-time wife, full-time church worker, and full-time student takes up a full amount of time. Sometimes I just stand and think about knocking my head up against the wall. I have seriously considered a short term break. Thankfully my college, WGU TN, is very flexible and the course mentors and my personal mentor have been so helpful. I have about 3 weeks to pass one more LIT class and then maybe, I'll be on track for next term.

    Meanwhile, I am enjoying being back in my old classroom. It is hard at times due to the numbers of kids I have, but they are eager learners and are *mostly* really cute. lol  I've been delving into my first attempts at learning about whole brain teaching and reflective practice. I'd love to hear how you are using these ideas in your EC classrooms.

I can never stay in a room too long without a makeover. Thanks to my dear hubby (who gets sucked into my requests), we spent a few hours re-arranging and cleaning one Sat. night (yeah, it was kind of like a date-- except we didn't eat or watch a movie or hold hands...but hey, there were no kids). I can say that probably by summer my little classroom will be needing another  makeover. I get restless and so does the tribe of monkeys. I can tell when a room (and its contents) are old news. It is amazing what a little shuffling of centers and manipulatives will do for a group of 4 and 5 year-olds.

I hope to post photos later. As for now, it's back to supper and homework.

Blessings in your new year!

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

My Preschool Daze: Awesome October goes out with a BANG! One last gre...

My Preschool Daze: Awesome October goes out with a BANG! One last gre...: I am kind of sad to see the month go. I love, love fall....it's my favorite season of all. But I've also enjoyed celebrating fall an...

Awesome October goes out with a BANG! One last great give away.

I am kind of sad to see the month go. I love, love fall....it's my favorite season of all. But I've also enjoyed celebrating fall and the return to school with some wonderful giveaways from a great group of Etsy sellers.

As we move into our last contest let me first say congrats to Ms. Diane B. for winning the binder clips and lanyards from last week. :)  These prizes are so nice to have on hand for a child's teacher, especially with the holidays soon upon us.

I have liked each and every item that has been graciously donated, and this week's is no exception. Jen W. over at Dreaming Dandelions (https://www.etsy.com/shop/dreamingdandelions) has a way with vinyl. She makes some really cute personalized tumbler glasses, ornaments, and other items. I had to really fight the urge to enter my own contest on this one! Man, did I want one of these tumblers  for myself (selfish blog contest holder, I know). This would be just adorable as is, or filled with candy for Christmas gift-giving. Whether you teach or know someone who does, you'll think this is just too darling.



Yours comes wrapped in cello wrap and tied with a yellow ribbon. And entering is easy-peasy....leave me a comment on here and that's it...you're entered. The contest will run until Friday, Nov. 1.

 Check out more of Jen's products and be sure to visit her Etsy store and add her to your favorite shops.



(this one's my personal favorite just in case one of you would 
like to bestow it upon me this Christmas morn)

Until next time,

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Awesome October continues with lanyard badges from ewindbiglerdesign

This week we are still awaiting a winner for the adorable binder clips from Kute Klipboards by Amy. So c'mon guys! Enter to win; you will love these clips I promise. You can see this link to find out more: http://iteach16kids.blogspot.com/2013/10/awesome-october-giveaway-binder-clips.html

Now on to this week's Awesome October giveaway: da da da dum dum...drum roll please...give it up for Erin at ewindbiglerdesigns.com .



 Erin makes these amazingly fab-u-lous lanyard badge clips, including the trendy Chevron style. Check out these photos she sent me.

She has other styles and badge reels, too.





What teacher wouldn't want one of these babies?
The colors are so cute. 
They'd make me smile even at 7 am on a rainy Monday
 morning faced with a class full of hyper-active preschoolers. 
Now THAT'S something. ;)

Entering to win is simple: leave a comment on here with your name and that's it!
In one week or so I'll draw out a winner and you will get to  pick an item from Erin yourself and she will ship it right to your door.

She is also offering a coupon code good until Nov. 3, 2013. If you go shopping at her Etsy store, make sure you use the coupon code 16KIDS and you'll get an additional 15% off!

http://facebook.com/ewindbiglerdesign

http://facebook.com/ewindbiglerdesign

Take care until next week and happy blogging.







Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Awesome October Giveaway: Binder Clips from KuteKlipboardsByAmy

 Congratulations to Diane B. on winning last week's contest for the teacher key chains from The Pink Pouch!

 Now for this week's prize: a set of practical and super-cute large paper clips from Amy Pierce over at KuteKlipboardsByAmy.etsy.com. I can so see myself using these when I someday have the joy of grading papers or sorting lessons by the day of the week. Not a lot of papers to be graded in pre-k. :)

 These clips are decked-out with a wacky, cross-eyed owl wearing a graduation hat in front of a manuscript handwriting background (and who doesn't love a wacky cross-eyed owl wearing a hat?) with the days of the week written on them. You get five clips in all, one for each weekday, because Heaven's-to-Betsy, teachers surely don't bring home work on the weekends, now do they? ;)   Maybe Amy is encouraging us to rest on weekends so that we don't become cross-eyed like that owl (it's cute on him, but you know, come on. The rest of us, not so much).

Here is a sample photo of one of Amy's clips. Of course, your set will have the owl design I described and no ribbon. 



 It can't get easier than this to enter,folks. Just leave a comment on here telling me how much you need these clips to make your life as an educator complete (or you can be no fun at all and just say you like them, short and sweet). Your choice. 

 If you can't post your comment here, as some have reported technical issues with doing, hop over to my Facebook page at CraftyMomLynn and post a comment there. One winner will be drawn on/around Sunday night, October 13.

Well folks, that's it 'til next week. 
Don't forget to visit Amy's shop link above and add her on FB at facebook.com/KuteKlipboardsByAmy.

Thanks for stopping by,