I find it absolutely amazing what women are doing online. It’s a big wide online world, and these women are carving their portion, some in a very big way. Turning their small towns into the world at their fingertips literally. I challenge you ladies to read each feature. Even if it initially doesn’t interest you. It is surprising what you will learn. So you don’t teach, or have kids at home. Pay close attention, so much more is being taught than meets the eye. So many ideas. So many exciting things to learn. From a teaching angle- superb, for a parent- top notch. Her story is one of determination, creativity, and resourcefulness. Now, let’s tilt our head to a slightly different angle. What can you learn from her marketing, and social media skills. I know one thing, I’m putting the video on my to learn list. I can think of all sorts of crazy things to do with that skill. Keep looking, there is always more to learn. Have a great day! - Kasse D.
Hi all! I feel so honored to have been contacted by Kasse about doing a post here at Rural Women Rock! I was kind of shocked at first, and wondered who would want to hear my story, but after I thought about it, I have had an amazing last 12 months, so maybe you might be a little intrigued. :)
As a gifted teacher for the public school system, I was proud of working with students and encouraging their high-abilities, yet I have always secretly wanted to do something on a grander scale and it pretty much killed me every day to drop my one-year-old off at the babysitter each day, and not being at home when my 13-year old came home from school.
On December 27th of 2010, with only a few days left of our winter break, I was getting a little anxious knowing I would have to return to work, but went about household chores as normal. My little one was taking an extra long nap, which I thought was odd, but after I had finished some vacuuming, I went in to wake him up for lunch and found him having a seizure. Never having direct experience with seizures, at the time, we did not know exactly what was going on, but he was not alert. It was, to date, the most terrifying experience I have ever been dealt, and I prayed I would never have to experience it again.
In the hours after the episode, we were informed that he suffered from a febrile seizure brought on by a temperature that spiked too quickly in a short period of time, and while they were scary, they were not a problem for the most part. He would not have any lasting effects, but there was a 50% chance of additional episodes within 1 year. If he did not have any more, the chances of reoccurrence went way down.
Of course, from the moment I found him so helpless, I knew I would not return to work in my classroom. I could barely sleep as it was after coming home from the Emergency Room - constantly watching the video monitor or rocking him in my arms - I certainly could not imagine him napping at my sitters' home (even though she would have watched him like her own). So, I did what no teacher with work in my area does - I submitted my notice, effective immediately.
It was not a hard decision to stay home with my son. It was a hard decision to give up a professional career I had worked hard to achieve. I had a Masters degree plus twelve additional graduate hours, a gifted endorsement, and was active in several professional organizations with speaking and leadership roles. I loved being a professional working mom. It was a lifestyle change for sure!
About a month after staying home and wondering what I would do while my baby was sleeping twice a day since the original fear was starting to wane with every new seizure-free day, I became restless and wanted to share some ideas of things that worked for me in my classroom with other teachers. Thus, The Organized Classroom Blog was born at the end of January 2011! I also created a Facebook fan page, and started playing with Twitter, and other social media. I like to include fun little videos tips in my blog posts, like the one below for creating your own dry erase boards.
Before I knew it, I was gaining fans and followers by the hundreds. I started to collaborate by guest blogging and participating in collaborative blogs, including Teaching Blog Addict. Suddenly other bloggers were emailing me about how I was gaining popularity so quickly and I realized that with all the time I was spending at home experimenting with lots of different types of social media and marketing tricks, I was finding what worked and what didn't for teacher, crafting, and mommy bloggers. From that, my Teaching Blog Traffic School Video Course was created.
I also noticed that teachers wanted a place to find all their favorite grade level specific blogs in one place, so I answered that call by starting Teaching Blog Central. Since then, I have also started my own collaborative blog, Classroom Freebies and Classroom Freebies Too in an effort to give back to teachers for all the work they do inside and outside of the classroom each day. Now it seems I always have something on the backburner. :)
I do feel strongly that there was a divine intervention that horrible December day to allow me to wake up each day and absolutely love what I do, and still be able to be a work-at-home-mommy with my toddler. It was a blessing in disguise and I am thrilled with being able to meet so many wonderful people from all over the world each day. There is no doubt that I am able to make that larger impact. I am even more thrilled that I can work on ABC's with my son in the process. Life is full of interesting events that can change so many things in the blink of an eye - literally.
Thanks so much for having me here at RWR and blessings to all!