It dawned on me this evening that I have lived in this house for 5 years next month. That means it has been FIVE YEARS since I taught public school. I really miss it sometimes. I really loved my third graders, and I REALLY loved my co-workers. I miss HAVING co-workers. There are days I really would love to sit in a teacher's lounge and VENT! I guess that's why I am such an avid fb-er.
I did love my preschoolers, too, (Well, honestly, there were a couple last year that REALLY stressed me out...), but I LOVED LOVED LOVED teaching third grade. It is the perfect age in my opinion. Still excited about school, but old enough to tie their own shoes and button their own jackets (among other things) but not yet too old to still be intimidated by my stern voice and teacher death-look.
And darn it, I was a good teacher! I connected with it! I lived for it! I was consumed by it! I thought about kids individually and what might work for them all the time. I thought up fun activities that might work to teach certain parts of our curriculum all the time. I still do, and those ideas just get wasted...*sigh* One day, I will get back in the classroom.
I love teaching my own kids, of course, and preschool playgroup, but it just isn't the same as that full-class dynamic of third graders.