Well said Michal! I find myself living the life you described to a "t",
"My entire teaching career has not only been filled with my K-12 art
curriculum, but also that of being a
wife and mother. With two children who were athletes and active in school I
decided day one of teaching that MY children came first. I spent my school
days giving 100% to my students, and my evenings giving 100% to my family.
Although my 2 children are both 5 and under I have yet to find time to do my
own art. I started teaching 9 years ago, the first 2-3 years I was
switching schools and trying to find my rhythm in the districts Once I had
a handle, along came my family who will always come first! Second my
students because I love my job and giving everything to my career, outside
of my family. I dream for the day I can get back to making my own art for
the sake of creating and doing what I have loved since I was a little girl.
When I read how determined, passionate, and genuine Staci is about her love
for art and teaching, I can only say her new school is lucky to find such a
"gem" to add to their district! We all know many teachers who aren't
willing to go the extra mile to educate their students. Staci is still
fresh in her profession.
All educators should keep current with trends, ideas, tools, and the center
of their content area. I feel I can do that without creating at this point
in my life/profession. By staying connected with my content area through
other mediums such as galleries, technology, networking, workshops, and list
servs such as this. I am still learning as an educator and hope I still
have the same attitude 20 years from now, as an artist, things are on hold
until I can find "me time" again in my life. I keep a journal of ideas and
goals for my future work. So as Michal said, "don't guilt those who are not
creating on the side," those same teachers may be exploring other venues in
their professional journey to better themselves as educators, such as
graduate degrees, curriculum planning, or ceramic workshops for the summer
:o) Those who are passionate about teaching art do it for the students to
provide every opportunity for students to create, appreciate, and apply the
life-long skills they acquire from art education to become a successful
member of society and the workforce.