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  1. “I AM TEACHER…” By first year teacher, Ione Kalish-Cottrell Presented to music, “I Am Woman” by Helen Reddy

  2. In August, I made my pledge to SUSD that I would make a difference for all my students…

  3. I was filled with so much excitement about my new classroom • Plus, I was anxious about getting to know all my students

  4. I just remember that I thought I was absolutely falling in love with all my students that first week…

  5. My Mentor Teacher cautioned me that I was experiencing the short but sweet “Anticipation Phase”

  6. It was a blur but I remember it was September…Suddenly I shifted into “survival of the fittest” mode! I recall that I was overwhelmed and the “fun challenges” kept pouring into my classroom EVERYDAY…

  7. September and October were FUN… Update my lesson plans with differentiated instructions for three different preps plus, I tried different techniques and strategies to get the entire classroom under control.

  8. I felt like I was drowning but there was no water involved… My Mentor Teacher gently reassured me that this was my “Survival Phase”

  9. The months of November and December were filled with questions about whether I made the right career choice and was I really a good teacher?

  10. My Mentor Teacher calmly reminded me that I was just going through my “Disillusionment Phase”

  11. After the winter break, I was beginning to feel much better again about my teaching abilities. Plus, I was finally able to reunite with my family, my daughter and husband who forgot that I still lived with them.

  12. By January, I was more organized, knew what to expect, developed better coping strategies and just had a better handle on the realities of teaching.

  13. My very wise Mentor Teacher shared that this was yet another phase known as, “Rejuvenation Phase” and it would be similar to a roller coaster ride.

  14. It has been an incredible year of growth and learning. I am wondering about my initial goal to make a difference for my students and asking, did I succeed?

  15. YES! I now have a vision… I am strong, I am invincible, and I made it through my first year of teaching!!!