WORKING UNDER THE UMBRELLA OF THE SCHOOL VERSUS DEALING DIRECTLY WITH MY CLIENT BASE OF PARENTS, GUARDIANS, & CHILDREN
‘Be free to exist on your own terms supported by the community that surrounds you, if we learn nothing else in life, let it be this’. Madam E
A COMMUNITY APPROACH to learning is what our schools in Victoria, Australia promote. I really loved this about working in a school setting. I loved the daily discussions with parents and relatives of children that gave me a wider sense of the child’s environment and helped me optimise a supportive environment for that child which acts as an extension of home.
I still reap the benefits of this now but with the added protection of developing a safe, supportive environment for myself, the educator to perform the necessary duty of care children.
I felt the competitive nature of working in schools with a constant pressure of being ‘in with the crowd of teachers, admin staff and leadership’ or keeping to myself which either way lead me to the exit sign at some point. Micromanagement and politics is a part of almost every work place these days and the loyalty offered from those at the top is reserved for the most brazen of people. After a while I realized you must be part of it to survive it and for some this means taking down colleagues in the process.
Long story short, after much trial and error I couldn’t comply with the above and had to find a way out whilst still engaging with what I love, teaching and interacting with the community to support children to live their best lives not just to impart my knowledge.
In my extensive career of teaching, my interactions with parents, children and the community gave me the most satisfaction with the insurance policy that we are all definitely focused on the same goal of supporting our children. I could cope well with disagreements and difficult discussions with parents because I know that their concerns come from a genuine place of love and a goal to do whatever it takes to give their child the best!
Since working on my own and dealing directly with my client base, I have seen a new world entirely. My dream of working with a group of people who directly surround the child and answering to these people has given me the freedom to help support children to learn in an environment that promotes the good will of all involved. I engage with parents regularly, now, as they are one of the major keys to the success of their child’s confidence in learning ‘how to learn’.
I not only have the opportunity to teach children, but I get to be part of the community that surrounds them. My students and parents are for the most part living internationally and attending my services remotely. I get to learn about different places, cultures and I learn about their life on a more personal, community level. One of my students reads to my two young children at home while I prepare their lunch and before I start my next session. These interactions are beneficial for everyone and particularly for the children I teach who are accessing mostly online programs for their education. It creates a connection to community and supports social and emotional development in a way that may not be otherwise available.
The transition of sorts has been a huge learning curve and will continue to throw new challenges my way. All guns blazing, I am ready and excited to be the driver of a field in education that is only recently being embraced after the beginning of a pandemic existence.
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Remote writing workshops for children aged 9-11 begins September 7, 2021. Look for updates on the ‘EVENTS & UPDATES’ page. Access to recordings are also available upon enrolment in the program.