Leaving the teaching field for retirement does not let one just ride off into the sunset as I thought I would.
More personal activities take precedence now which is the greatest part of retirement, and I find teaching is still a large part of me but on a different scale. I still want to create, read, write and be an influence. Trying to influence 80 students every day for 180 days a year was becoming quite an overwhelming task for me in the last few years before retirement. It was time to go to a different place.
My arena now consists of 2-4 children who are all different ages and have different needs--mainly 2 1/2 years to 6 1/2 years. There are 3 boys and one girl. I cannot be with them 180 days a year, but I can make a difference when I am with them. I am a grandparent, and I love being with them especially when they create.
We all have our writers notebooks now--some are writing, and some are just drawing. I am tickled to death especially when Lilly (4 1/2) finds and grabs her notebook without prompting and says, "I'm ready." We try to write/draw with "No walk, no talk"--really hard to do!!! Noah (4 1/2) likes to print his name and others words with his race car drawings. Lucas (6 1/2) prints sentences with many different drawings, and James (2 1/2) loves markers and circles!
Then we share and clap for one another. After that, we write/draw again because we want to.
This activity doesn't last long right now, but this is better than any sunset!!!