The Educator's PLN

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I have been teaching Kindergarten for six years now. Before that I taught at a Daycare for five year as I was in school for my undergraduate degree. I love my job. I know kids, I am a big kid. Everyday I enter the classroom, I recieve twenty hugs. The parents are great, I feel respected now because I have been in the same district for awhile and I am requested by parents every year.

The issues come up when I am talking to my friends or famiily. I here it all the time, "how is babysitting"? I am definately not a babysitter and I feel like most educators realize this but at times I am bothered by my friends and family reactions. I chose to be a Kindergartne teacher. Did you read that? I CHOSE to be a Kindergarten teacher. I knew it when I first entered my the doors to my Undergraduate University! I feel it is one of the most important grades to teach. I have the opportuinity to set the foundation for students and mold their views of what education is. I want every student to love school and hopefully that follows them as they become life-long learners!

It is 2010 and I still feel like I am battling sterotypes everyday! First of all, I am a married man. I have a son now and I stand 6'5 and weigh 250 pounds. I am not your "normal" Kindergarten teacher. I am just as caring as any other Kindergarten teacher I have met. Sometimes, I care more about my students then most do. I am a nurturer and yes I do give out band aides for "boo boos"! Men can be sensative too, I know it sounds like a make beleive story but my heart and mind leads me to help people. I am just wired that way.

I am one of two men teaching Kindergarten in my building. I know of only two men in a 100 mile radius of me teaching Kindergarten. I have never seen a fifty or sixty year old male Kindergarten teacher. So who do I model after? My Master's is in Instructional Technology and not administrative. I have no urge to be a principal. I want to be a Kindergarten teacher. Like I said earlier, I feel like it is so important! I find it hard to network with peers teaching Kindergarten because of my gender. I work in a female fiell and it is not always easy to make professional and personal connections to my peers. I find it easier to network with principals, men teaching older grade levels, and gym teachers.

I guess that is why I like Social networks so much! Most people are more willing to share ideas with me because I am just an "educator" not a male kindergarten teacher. Thank you to websites like this one I am blogging on, I am able to meet, connect, and share ideas without sterotypes. Don't judge a book by its cover. This is what we teach our chidlren so do what you teach.

I am curious if other male Kindergarten teachers feel the same way? Please let me know what you think.

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