When you live a considerable distance from so much as a Walmart, every trip becomes a math problem.
You need to be at Jester Park at 9:30 am traveling at a speed of 74 mph, what time do you need to leave your home?
This is one of the many reasons why I am so grateful to have married an accountant. His mathematical brain completes me.
The answer to the question is 7:40 am. So, in theory I should have arrived at Jester Park around 9:20 am.
I, however, arrived at 10:00.
I am the daughter of a truck driver. My dad has driven across the entire country. He knows every road like an old friend. You could be anywhere in the world, and my dad would be able to navigate you home.
I inherited many things from my father. The golden hair that sparkles in the sunlight, a toothy smile that radiates joy, and the ability to love unconditionally and without ceasing.
The one thing that I did not inherit from my father was his internal compass.
According to my father, I am “directionally challenged”.
I have gotten myself lost more times than I would like to admit, but I have never remained lost. I may be directionally challenged, but I always know where my destination is.
I navigate using familiar landmarks. I see these landmarks and I know that I am headed in the right direction.
This weekend I saw a few landmarks, but not driving from point A to point B. This may obvious given the fact that I previously stated that I was 40 minutes late. I saw landmarks in who I am as a teacher.
After driving a curvy mile through a wooded area, I saw my first landmark. A small wooden cabin where members of the ICTE tribe were gathered to inspire each other to grow as writers.
This is the third ICTE event that I have attended and I cannot get enough of the tribe. At every event I am greeted with phenomenal educators that cultivate inspiration and thrive to enrich the lives of anyone that has the courage to dedicate the time to engage.
The concept of the retreat was so simple.
Art teacher should make art.
Music teachers should create music.
English teachers should write.
We know better than anyone the power of writing. It is empowering, therapeutic, inspiring, and so much more.
We need to write like we need to breathe.
We need to write to stay engaged with the writing process and be empathetic towards our students.
As I grow as a teacher, my ICTE tribe continues to guide me to be the best teacher I can be. I may not be at my final destination yet, but I know that I am on the right path because of these landmarks.
I left the event feeling inspired as a writer and rejuvenated as a teacher. Today I saw another landmark, but you will have to wait till tomorrow to hear about that one.
P.S. If you have not read or heard of the book “Ish” by Peter H Reynolds you can hear it here. It may not be as good as Haley Moehlis reading to you, but it is pretty good.
Kristina Moore is an English Teacher Librarian at a small Iowa high school. She likes to think of herself as a writer(ish). This is her first year of teaching and first year of SOL.