The summer after 6th grade when I turned 11, I set up a program in my backyard. Each morning I would walk around the extended neighborhood and pick up around 15 children, then take them to my house from 8 am to 4 pm. All day long, I would lead them in games relays and arts and crafts activities. I would walk them home at the end of the day. For this, I only charged the parents 25 cents a day! (Now, I clearly didn’t have a strong business sense, but my heart was in it!) Next, I’d hop on my bike and ride the mile to the 88 Cent Store and spend my profits on materials for the next day.
I guess I was always a teacher at heart. Since that summer, I have always worked with children…community centers, parent-child programs, the parks system and as an assistant director to a 35 child developmental daycare center. Oh yes…and this is my 31st year as a Portland Public Schools teacher, having taught Kindergarten through 5th grade. Teaching is my passion and I feel so honored to be able to do a job I love in such a wonderful community.