A few weeks ago, I was notified that representatives for the California Teacher of the Year program would be conducting a site visit to observe my teaching practice. Shortly after that event, I was summoned to the California Department of Education in Sacramento for an interview, which meant that I had the most surreal two days ever. On a Thursday, I taught from 7:45 until 11:35am, conferenced with parents until 3:00pm, drove an hour and a half to the Ontario airport, boarded a plane, and flew to Sacramento where I arrived (after a delay of several hours) around 10:00pm. The next day, I interviewed at CDE, then flew back to the desert to await, on pins and needles, the final verdict. Whew! I'll be honest: it was a lot to handle. Throughout the entire process, I was unable to discuss anything with anyone, beyond my husband and my principal.
At the end of the day, people have an innate need to make a difference by having a positive impact, and that's why I think most of us decide to go into the teaching profession. My hope is that as a California Teacher of the Year, I will be able to shed light on the importance of teaching with visionary passion. For me, teaching in a technology-rich environment provides the toolbox that enables my visionary passion. For you, it might be something different. It almost doesn't matter as long as we can identify it and replicate it daily so that greatness has the opportunity to emerge in our students.
Being a 2014 CA TOY is undoubtedly an honor, and I certainly owe a debt of gratitude to the people with whom I collaborate in person on a daily basis, as well as all those whose blogs, tweets, posts, and articles I read. Thanks for making me the teacher I am.