This is a picture of the guy on the other side of the computer typing away.
Why blog? For over 15 years now I have been an educator. I have laughed, motivated, consoled, counseled, praised and toiled at the front of the classroom. It is my hope that these years offer a perspective helpful to you whether you’re a teacher at the primary level as I am or decided to reach students at the secondary.
Teachers have a tough job. They’re expected to do more than seems possible in three quarters the time. Teachers care for their students to the degree to try to then make the impossible happen. Lastly, when the year ends, they are worn out finishing the year strong and stressing about assessment scores. This is the art of teaching today. Few understand like fellow teachers.
Time flies by us. My first students are now out of high school and in college and perhaps beyond about now. No question that teaching is a passion of mine.
While now in Virginia, I completed my graduate degree at Oregon State (go Beavers!) and also add University of Richmond and Radford University as alma maters – yes, as I tell my students, I did in fact complete my degree at all three.
When someone seriously wants to know, I also tell them I have convinced college presidents to jump onboard a statewide initiative to provide service to their communities, had a stare down with a skunk by the light of my headlamp, and each year I teach 1,080 individual lessons (whew!).
I have also completed a 100 mile bicycling challenge in the Virginia mountains, led Scouts through the wild (while supporting them from far behind on the trail), I have cut down a squirrel-highway-to-my-roof tree during a nighttime rainstorm, and once even challenged a police officer to a donut eating contest.
I’ve been run over by a horse more than a few times and have a well developed poker face without ever having learned the game. I am an immigrant’s son, supervised AmeriCorps members across the Commonwealth, hiked above low flying jets, worked for Martin PR as a summer intern, led a volunteer staff as Editor-in-Chief of my college newspaper and have been picked up by the corporate jet as a nineteen year old auditor. English is also my second language.
These experiences and the stories from the front of the classroom encourage me to encourage you.
Teaching isn’t the easiest profession. I’m sure most professions, done well, aren’t easy at all. However rarely do we get the chance to commiserate, encourage, and celebrate successes together – my hope is that my stories and experiences will do just that.
Whether a fellow educator, parent of young ones, Scouter, or adventurer (which I like to think I am when visiting REI)… thanks for reading.
Oh, about that donut eating contest with that police officer, yeah… I lost. It’s quite the story.
Interested in contacting me? I can be reached at stevenbkaminski (then adding @gmail.com) – don’t you love circumventing those auto-spam-bots? Thank you for reaching out. I look forward to hearing from you.