All posts by Bekah

Teaching Experience? What Do I Know?

teaching experience

I was thinking recently about how long it has been since I gradated. 3 years. For some of you that may sound like a short while, but for me it’s a lot longer than I expected to still not have a job teaching in my own classroom.

I am a certified elementary teacher. Basically, all that means is I have a degree to teach K-6 grades. Unfortunately, it has been a bit tougher than I thought. I have always known I wanted to be a teacher. I guess you could say it was a calling. Sounds cheesy, I know, but it’s the truth. I cannot wait to get my own classroom and my own class of students waiting for me to give them what they want and need: knowledge. Sometimes I feel that I am the only one that has a passion for being in the classroom. And yet, it seems so far out of my reach at times I feel I’ve chosen the wrong path. But, nevertheless, I keep going. I keep setting up interviews only to be told the position has already been filled by someone with more experience.

More experience? Okay. I can see how a teacher with more experience can be the better choice, but here is my dilemma. How can a new teacher ever gain experience if all the principals/employers are looking for teachers who already have years of experience in a classroom? I can substitute all I want and it will not count towards experience. I can be an educators assistant all I want and it will not count as teaching…even though I taught several lessons during that year because I had a teacher who understood the unfairness in the hiring process of new teachers. That is beside the point, but she was a wonderful teacher and she split her job of teaching with me because she felt I knew what I was doing and had faith in me that I could do a good job.

Perhaps more principals should give that a try. I’m not saying they should hire every new teacher with no experience they come across, but it would give people like me a little hope that I will one day teach in the classroom. I have experience. It may not be in having my own classroom, but I have worked hard to get to that point…only to be told that it is just out of my grasp because I don’t have the “right” experience. It is discouraging.

I am not writing this to put anyone down or to take a jab at principals. No, I’m writing this with the hopes that those of you who read this might realize the potential of a new teacher with little experience you interview. We are not terrible at what we do. For goodness sake, we spent four years in college, paying who knows what, in order to earn a degree to teach.

I don’t want to do this for the time off or pay. Anyone who is a good teacher will know those are not the perks of this job. I want to do this so I can make a difference in the kids of tomorrow. They are the ones that will be in charge when we get old. I want to know that I was able to show them a good role model and that I was able to give them the knowledge they need to succeed in life. I care about the kids I have worked with. They are more than just an empty space that needs to filled with a set curriculum. They are children. Waiting to be given a chance to soak up everything they can about something that interests them.

So, why not make every subject something they are interested in? I have a few ideas on how to do this. Stay tuned to find out.

*Media Image from blog Strange New Teacher: The Teacher’s Job Interview Oct. 2008.

Sunflower Centerpiece

For my recent wedding, which had a sunflower theme, I was looking for a sunflower centerpiece to decorate my tables at the reception. So, of course, I had my sister and my mom combing through the endless pages of Pinterest looking for sunflower wedding decor. We pinned a few we liked, but they didn’t have exactly what we were looking for. So we decided to hit up good ole’ Hobby Lobby and this is what we came up with. I hope you like it! 🙂

Step 1: Gather Materials

Step 1: Sunflower Centerpiece

First off, here are the items you will need:

  • vase (I used a hurricane vase about 10″ tall)
  • silk flowers of your choosing *
  • Scissors/wire cutters
  • floral rocks/marbles
  • floating candle
  • water

*You can use fresh flowers, but I would not submerge them in water until you are ready to put your centerpiece out for guests. The flowers tend to fall apart and make the water look yucky if left underwater too long.

Step 2: Trim Flowers


This step is very simple. Depending on the type of flowers you use will determine whether or not you need wire cutters. The sunflowers I used had a very thick stem and scissors just wouldn’t cut it.

First, decide what blooms you want to use and how many you need. The sunflowers I chose are about as big as my palm, so I chose 3 to cover the inside of my vase. You may need more or less depending on the size of your blooms.

Next, take your scissors/wire cutters and trim off the blooms leaving about a 1″ stem. If you are using silk flowers, bend the stem down to anchor the bloom into the rocks.

Note: If your vase is smaller you may want to adjust the size of your stem.

Step 3: Add Rocks


This step is kind of self-explanatory. Take your rocks/marbles and poor them into your vase. It’s up to you how much you want to fill your vase.

Step 4: Add Flowers


For this step, take your blooms and place them in the vase any way you would like. Try to anchor the blooms down into the rocks with the stem. This will help hold them in place when you add water.

DSC03173Step 5: Add Water


Again, this step is a bit self-explanatory. Just be sure not to over fill your vase.

Once the water is in the vase, the flowers will probably float to the top if they have a big center like sunflowers. Gently squeeze the air out by pressing the middle. They should sink down to the bottom. Then you can adjust them to make sure the blooms look exactly like you want.


Step 7: Add Candle


You are almost done! Just add your floating candle, light, and you are ready to display!

I hope you enjoyed this tutorial. Be sure to come back for more DIY teaching!