Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Lack of Inspiration

I’m writing to explain why I haven’t been posting regularly. It’s because of a lack of inspiration. Recently, I applied for a job at a childcare center. The job was working with two-year-olds. They had one teacher working with four or five kids and it seemed consistent. I liked how one teacher worked with a few specific kids who meant that you’d really get to know them instead of trying to keep track of fifteen kids and all their information. They interviewed me and I had an hour of observation time at the center. Obviously, I didn’t get this job and it was disappointing.

In the spring, a similar thing happened when I applied to a new program working with infants and toddlers. They interviewed me, but there was no follow up. At least with the second job, they contacted me to tell me that I didn’t get it. This has been going on since I graduated last year and it’s been frustrating. Every time I start thinking there’s hope for a new beginning at a new center, it falls through.

That’s one of the sources of my lack of inspiration. The other source is my current job. I’m not saying anything negative about where I work. I’m only saying that there’s no room to grow as a substitute. When I was an intern and last year when I covered for someone who was out for many weeks, I was able to do my own lesson plans and I felt like I was contributing something. I miss the creative part of the job. Also, as a substitute, you don’t have much input into anything. You just do what they tell you and cover for whoever is missing. Yes, you gain experience by working more days with kids than you would have otherwise, but, then what? They also have a few volunteers that come in too and it makes it difficult with so many adults in the room. The kids aren’t sure who to listen to or who will be there from one day to the next. Sometimes I feel bad because I’ll be there all week and then I won’t show up again until another whole week has passed. All the kids know me since I’ve worked there for a long time so when I’m not there, they wonder where I’ve been. The other thing is with all those adults, some of us end up with nothing to do. On some days, we’ve almost had one adult per child and that’s usually not necessary especially in the older group. If you want to be actually working on something with the kids, you have to almost race to get there first.

I’m not saying the job is pointless because you can always be there to assist or play with one of the kids. I’m saying that I’d like more responsibility and to have more say in my work. Once in a while, I’ll find special books to bring, make a homemade display or plan a quick activity when everyone else is out of ideas, but I haven’t been able to do most of those things for months. In most cases, when I bring something special or plan something, I feel like it’s not wanted or like I’m invading someone’s territory. Some of the people I work with get very territorial about their groups and will only let certain people help them out. I’m not a pushy person and I usually ask before doing anything there, but many times I think, why did I bother? I wondered if anyone who reads my blog has felt that way.

For now, I think I’ll focus my blog more on lesson plans and if I get more inspiration to do random activities I’ll post those. I’ll try to do a couple lesson plans per week since they take longer than the activity posts. I think my upcoming themes will be families, colors, pets and of course Halloween. Then I can start getting into winter themes and I always have fun with those. I’d like to thank all the people who have posted comments. I appreciate all of them.

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