As I go through the stores there are signs of school everywhere. I can’t help but have a little bit of excitement as I walk past the school supplies, remembering the smell of a new pack of crayons with more colors than I can imagine. I can almost hear, too, the quiet groans of thousands of teachers for whom the real work is only just beginning. Never mind that you have already spent hours attending workshops, reading education books you have been unable to read during the school year, planning and shopping for new supplies and activities you want to use, and setting up your classroom, often in the heat of August.
There is no doubt that the last few years of teaching have been difficult. Teachers have been under intense scrutiny and asked to work under conditions that brush aside the needs of the whole child and the research over the last several decades on child development. Politicians seem to change educational rulings on a whim, or what will garner the most votes. Still, we teach because we believe in our children and the ways we can help them achieve their dreams and ambitions. So now, when the pressures of the job press on ourselves and our colleagues, NJAKE believes, more than ever, in the early childhood teacher and applauds what we do and supports their efforts. Don’t read this blog and think this organization is a bunch of whiners and complainers. No, we are too busy implementing best practices and finding effective ways to teach the young child in a way that incorporates how they learn best. If you believe this is the time to find solutions in a constructive way and are tired of confronting the negativity around us, we hope you will join us to give the children in our care the best we can offer.