For years, my students have been asking me when Moffat's birthday is. As a five or six-year-old, birthdays are a really big thing. I have thought about it for a long time, not knowing what to tell my kids.
The answer came to me very recently while I was organizing pictures. I realized that it was ten years ago this Mother's Day weekend that Moffat took his first family trip to San Francisco. My, then, 9-year-old daughter, carried Moffat around for the entire trip in a backpack.
I have very fond memories of that Mother's Day, enjoying a nice, long walk along the beach of the Pacific Ocean. We enjoyed a relaxing lunch at the Park and Beach Chalet, at the very west end of Golden Gate Park. This trip marked the beginning of many trips that my family would take with Moffat in tow. One reason I enjoyed having Moffat along, was that it gave me the opportunity to photograph the many spectacular settings on our travels without my kids making faces and not wanting mom to take pictures. It also gave me the opportunity to take my travels back to my classroom to share with my students.
I would never have guessed at that time, that Moffat would be alive, and VERY well, ten years later. I am proud of the work that I have done in using him as a teaching tool. To this day, there are over 10,000 pictures of Moffat across the country and a couple hundred students have adopted Moffat at home as part of our extended learning.
Outside of the classroom, it has been a joy to see Moffat being adopted by the next generation of young learners. This weekend, Moffat enjoyed some birthday festivities with some of his younger fans. Life is good when there is homemade birthday cake and sand castle cake to be had. Moffat traveled safely in carseats as he went to the beach and then was later tucked into bed after a long weekend. All the while, he was loved and well cared for. My favorite picture is that of my own daughter, now grown, sharing Moffat with the next generation.
I dream of what Moffat might do in the next ten years. He is something and he is part of the family. Happy 10th birthday Moffat!!
I am thrilled to be part of a diverse group of educators from across the country challenging themselves to reflect and write daily. I know for my self, this will be a challenge. I already missed the mark with day one and am ok with that. I have enjoyed reading posts from the #365 bloggers and have felt inspiration for reflection.
With this being said, my path to teaching was established when I was in elementary school. For as long as I can remember, I have always wanted to be an educator. No other profession has ever crossed my mind. At one point, I thought I might like to go into administration, but have come to realize that this is not where my talents lie.
I am proud to say that I am still very close to my second grade teacher, Robin Boggs and was thrilled when she was able to attend the district awards banquet this past spring where I was honored. She has been a constant cheerleader over my entire career and having her hand written (she still doesn't own a computer) letter of recommendation will always be a treasure.
This last spring posed a new challenge in my teaching career. Almost simultaneously as I was honored with a district teaching award, a position and the neighboring elementary school became open and I had several friends text me that this change would be perfect for me. At the time, it was nothing but a huge, emotional dilemma. The school I was teaching at was my neighborhood school, the school where my children attended, the school where my husband was PTA president and the school that had just honored me with an award. To walk away at this point was inconceivable! Through many conversations with dear friends, I did go ahead and apply and ultimately was offered the job one hour after my interview. Even writing about it now brings tears. For a long time I couldn't talk about it without crying. It was hard to face the many families that had supported me and were looking forward to having future siblings in my class. This school was my home!
Four months later, I know it is the right decision. It has been hard to leave behind close friends that have walked many years of ups and downs, not only professionally, but personally as well. Friendships are hard to maintain with distance and this saddens me.
My new school has been so welcoming. The culture of the school is going to allow me to be me in my teaching. Sadly, so many schools have gone to such scripted curriculum. This is an atmosphere that I know I would suffocate and die in. Not so at my new school. I feel challenged to learn the Daily 5 and Readers Workshop as reading models, yet at the same time, have the freedoms to integrate my passions of history and museum studies. The community has already shown excitement about my background and passions and I am excited to have the opportunity to continue to craft my teachings.
In the end, change was hard. In the end, change can be good, even if at the time we fight it. I am excited about a new adventure in a new school. I am hopeful that I can rise to the challenge of the #365 blog. FIngers crossed!!!
wife, mom, teacher, author, history nerd and the lady that carries around a rabbit