Monday, July 14, 2014

Teachers have three loves: love of learning, love of learners, and the love of bringing the first two loves together. - Scott Hayden

In my 37 years of teaching high school, every day I learned something – from a student, a colleague, an administrator, a film, or a book.   I really loved learning, and I still do.  Many of my friends are retired teachers, seasoned veterans, and even some novice teachers, but they all have one thing in common:  they all love learning. Learning is what teachers do, and the process of sharing that love of learning with students (at least in my case) is not work, it is a passion. Passion on a daily basis is exhausting, which is why teachers are so tired at the end of the school day.  Passionate teaching and all that standing and walking around the room really wear a teacher down!

When I first retired in June of 2011 to take care of my husband Scott, who had stage four colon cancer, I really missed the daily learning experiences at school, but I knew that I needed and wanted to be with Scott.  When Scott died in May of 2012 and I spent a year reorganizing, downsizing, moving, and grieving (not in that order), I began to think about the two giant holes in my life.  With the passing of my best friend and soul mate, as well as the loss of my daily routine of going to school and being the teacher, I missed having new experiences and learning every day.  Because of those holes, I decided to finish my book for student teachers.

I sent the finished manuscript to my publisher last Monday, and since then I have enjoyed long meetings with both my editor and publishing team and my lawyers.  And guess what?  I don’t know any of the things that they all seem to know and understand, and to quote Shakespeare, for all of those meetings, “It was Greek to me.”  Who knew that cover design, book size, types of paper, copyrights, and trademarks could be so involved?  I have even been given assignments by these professionals so that I can contribute to future discussions as the book goes to print.  And guess what?  I am back to learning something new every day!  In fact, I am learning MANY new things every day!  And STUDENT TEACHING: THE INSIDE SCOOP FROM A MASTER TEACHER is about to become a reality.  I am thrilled.  When I started the whole publishing process, I did not know where it would lead me, and a series of baby steps and learning in increments have brought me to the brink of becoming a published author. 

I am sharing this information with you because I firmly believe that we are never too old to learn or to try new things.  Learning stimulates the brain, making a person feel so fresh, and so filled with wonder.  And sharing new-found knowledge is equally as exciting as learning new things!  In my vast experiences with friends, I have found that most people are interested in learning something new.  So, take a class, read a new book, write your own book, or take a chance on something you have always wanted to do.  Enrich your own life, and you will enrich the lives of others when you share your new expertise.  Learning new things keeps you and your brain young!  Better yet, you never know what influence you may have on another when your share your experiences.  In my mind, the world is just one giant classroom, and sometimes you are the teacher, and sometimes you are the student.  I find both sides of the desk to be equally stimulating. 

I welcome your comments or suggestions.  Thanks for reading!

Rittman Publishing, LLC

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