My First Weeks Teaching

Hola readers, and welcome back to my blog! As promised, I bring you a post all about my first few weeks teaching. As some of you know, I accepted my first ‘big girl’ teaching job over the summer, and I now teach kindergarten through 8th grade students at a small, Catholic school. I’m not exactly sure how I’m going to word all of the emotions that I have felt the past few weeks, but alas I will just start writing, as that’s what I do with 99% of these posts!!

Where to begin?? I suppose the first day. I was SO, so, soooo nervous for my first day all leading up to the morning of. I got all my nerves out the night before by over-preparing for the morning. I had EvErYtHiNg laid out for the morning, a note to self not to forget my lunch, the whole nine yards. So when I woke up on Thursday, August 17th, I felt excited and prepared.

Now, I wasn’t exactly sure what to expect on my first day, but I was sort of expecting some mass amount of chaos for whatever reason. I arrived to school SUPER early to lay out name cards, prayer sheets, etc. on each desk before I did my morning door duty, greeting each student as they entered the school building. I was feeling very ready to go. UNTIL…

I walked back to my classroom, and the 6th graders were waiting outside my door, not the 8th graders I was expecting and had prepared for. It turned out there was a last minute schedule change that hadn’t yet been communicated to the specials teachers. So after a quick little panic, I reset the name-tags and then invited the 6th grade into my classroom. Honestly, not a huge deal, but just a true testament to something I heard over and over again as advice for new teachers: expect the unexpected and be flexible! 

Honestly after that moment, my first day went so, so much better than I ever could have imagined. I left school that day totally flippin’ exhausted, but totally exhilarated, and I had an inner peace that could only come from knowing, truly knowing, that I am exactly where I am meant to be.

Although I could sit here and detail each moment because I have cherished all of them, the really good and the really tough, I’ll end this post with a bulleted list of things I’ve learned through just my first few weeks in my own classroom. I know I have a longggg way to go, but I’m ready and eager to learn so that I can be the impactful teacher that I’ve always wanted to be. Without further ado:

  • Comfy shoes are sooooo important
  • There are really good classes and really tough classes, but each has their own redeeming qualities
  • Being flexible and creative is essential
  • Planning periods can be your best friend if you use them properly!
  • I hear my own voice as a former student in a lot of the voices of my current students, and it’s the weirdest, coolest thing
  • Having great coworkers is a wonderful thing (I’m very blessed in this department)
  • You are gonnnna fail (I have, but I learned!)
  • Kindergarteners are so much smarter than you think, and they have no filter – it’s amazing
  • Any teeny tiny compliment towards my teaching is appreciated 1289483x more than any student, parent, coworker will ever understand — when you are a brand new teacher, it’s hard to know if you’re doing a good job or not
  • Teaching IS tough, but 150% worth it

Now, I feared writing this post for criticism it might receive. I don’t really know what kind of criticism, but I’m still just so uncertain if I’m doing a good job – I want to do an amazing job. I know that all takes time. Maybe some long-time teachers are reading this thinking “Ohhh just you wait. You don’t know what’s coming”. And you’re right, I don’t always know what’s coming, but after having a moment today where I literally got *teary-eyed* just observing one of my middle school classes actually engaging in the activity I had planned, learning the material, and having fun doing so, I believe whatever is coming my way in the next weeks, months, years that I will be teaching, is something that I look forward to whether it be a moment of triumph or utter failure. (I am so sorry that sentence is so long, but I don’t know how to break it up so just roll with it okay thanks).

Thank you so much for taking the time to read what I had to say. I know a lot of my friends and family have been asking how the new job has been, and it’s just hard to say alllll of this in a text message. Obviously, lol. So consider this as my gigantic text message letting you know that I feel blessed to be where I am, and I’m excited for the future whatever that may bring. Love y’all. Feel free to leave a comment below!

Besos,

Megan LouAnn

Books I’ve Read This Summer: 2017

Hello readers, and welcome back to meganlouann! I last left you with a heartfelt retelling of a huge 180 in my life in my most recent post You Were Made to Be Courageous. Since writing that post back in May, several new happenings have come up including landing a new job as a Spanish teacher and making the decision to post-pone graduate school a semester. More on that in a future post. You may have noticed I did a little revamping on the site. My old tagline “a college student trying to find her place in this world” didn’t feel 100% appropriate any longer, and I want to switch the focus of my blog a bit away from college, to doing ‘life’ in my twenties. I am so happy to still have loyal readers like yourself who want to hear about my life and where I’m headed. I truly intend to upscale my content both in quantity and quality. I hope you all will join me in that journey — your support has always meant the world to me. Now, without further ado, here is my second installment of “Books I’ve Read This Summer”. For the first installment, click here.


This summer was a pretty successful summer as far as reading books go. Now that I’m not in school, I hope to continue my success with reading for “fun” well into the end of this year. I plan to have a post sometime in December to update you on which books I’ve read since now.

The Decent Proposal – Kemper Donovandecentproposal

I read this book in roughly three days. It is the perfect mix of romance, mystery, and light-heartedness. It was unexpected, and the ending left me pondering the entire book for days.

The Hating Game – Sally Thorne

hatinggameThis book was impossible to put down. It was an easy read, but the tension between the two main characters was the perfect blend of a love/hate relationship. I will put out there that this book is definitely for a ‘mature’ reader if you’re picking up what I’m putting down.

Teaching Spanish: The Essential Handbook – Rachel W. Kirk

So I didn’t spend the whole summer only reading for fun, although I did breeze through this book devouring everything it had to say. I wanted to be as prepared as possible for my first few weeks teaching, and I definitely think this book gave me some essential tools to start with for topics such as classroom management, lesson planning, etc.

Everything, Everything – Nicola Yooneverythingeverything.jpg

I have to say, out of all the books I read this summer, this one was probably my least favorite. However the mere fact that I read it all the way through says something, as I’m one to pick up a book and stop reading it half-way through if it’s not doing it for me. This book was very easy to read and fast paced, but definitely a little predictable. I think it’s geared for a younger audience, so that may be part of the reason I didn’t love it.

The Shack – William P. Young

shackI can’t really even put into words what this book means to me. It is a book unlike any other that I’ve read. When I first purchased it, I sat in Starbucks for three hours because I literally couldn’t put it down. The first half of the book is tragic and gut-wrenching, but it is so worth it for the ending. If you are a Christian or even someone who has a lot of questions about God, you need to go read this book. It gave me a whole new perspective on God and how He loves us. Trust me on this one, you will remember this book for the rest of your life. I haven’t watched the movie yet because I’ve heard controversial things on it, and I don’t want to ruin what the book did for me. It is incredible, and hands down my favorite book that I read this summer.

Currents: Currently I am bouncing back and forth between two books. The first is called Alex, Approximately, and I’m not too far into it so I will have to include my thoughts in another post. The second is called The Shack Revisited, and it is a deeper look into the theology behind the book. I’m telling y’all The Shack is insane, and I needed more.

That’s all I have for now. Thank you so much for reading, and if you have any really good book suggestions please comment them down below! Like I said, I have a lot more time to read during this fall and winter season than I normally would, so I’m always looking for another great book.

Stay tuned for posts in the near (I really promise!!) future on my first few weeks teaching in a traditional classroom and some thoughts on random stuff I’m currently enjoying.

Besos (kisses),

Megan LouAnn

 

Finding Unwavering Joy

candles.jpg

Hi friends, it’s been a while, but I’m happy to be making the time to sit down and write again finally. I can’t believe it’s already November! I swear I blinked, and this fall semester just flew by! I guess that’s what happens when you are a senior in college and not only trying to maintain a good GPA but also trying to figure out what the next step is after you walk across the stage at graduation. I have less than six months until I’m a college graduate, and I have no idea how to feel about it. Actually, to be honest, I feel everything about it if you know what I mean. Relief, sadness, anxiety, exhaustion, joy. Everything. But today I want to talk all about one of those feelings – joy – and not just in the context of graduation.

In this day and age, it’s really hard to have joy in all situations. Social media has become a ‘joy-sucking’ funnel in many cases. FOMO, fear of missing out, has become a serious issue for all users of social media. You can watch snapchat story after snapchat story of people hanging out together and having a good time, and sometimes you can’t help but wonder why you’re sitting in your pajamas at 6pm on a Friday night. Aside from FOMO, social media is like a drug that we just can’t get away from. We are constantly checking our phones to see who liked our picture, who said what about the election, how are people reacting to XY and Z. Social media is like a cold that you can’t quite shake. We are a generation who puts so much emphasis into how we portray ourselves via social media and how others perceive us. And let me tell you something, it’s sucking the joy out of our lives.

Now, I like Snapchat just as much as the next person, and I’m guilty of over-thinking about if I should post a picture to Instagram or not for fear no one will ‘like’ it. But when I sit here and say that, I can’t help but think about how silly I sound. Because the truth is that our joy will never come from how many Twitter followers we have or if so and so liked our Instagram picture. That is all 100% fabricated joy, and it’s dependent on our situations and circumstances. What if it were possible to have joy in the midst of no matter what trials we go through in life?

It’s a very hard value and lesson to learn, but it is possible. When we put our hopes and dreams not in the people surrounding us but in our Father’s hands, only then can we have true, complete, unwavering joy. Despite our circumstances, despite what is going on in the world around us, we can have joy through Jesus at all times. This is not a naive way of life, but a Christ-like one. Put your faith in the One who made you, and I think you’ll find that there is immense power in not caring what other people think of you. When you’re able to walk through life only caring to please your God, you will be able to conquer anything.

Unfortunately, this joy isn’t something that can be found over night, and it can be lost much easier than it is found, but I encourage you to seek out that unwavering joy that can only come from the one true King because it will be a journey that takes you much farther than you can imagine.

I hope you all have a blessed week and Thanksgiving, and thank you for reading!

Stay classy,

Megan LouAnn