Still got a lot to learn...
I'm actually an experienced teacher with more than five years of high school English under my belt. However, after losing my job due to budget cuts last year, I've had the chance to reflect and realize exactly how much I still had to learn. In short, I made many mistakes throughout my short career, and though it's reasonable to say that everybody makes mistakes within the first few years, I feel that I made more than others who had been teaching as long as I. This is not due to me being overly critical with myself; administrators often commented that my work was not up to snuff in several areas, and though I was trying my best, I never seemed to figure things out. Though my kids were learning and their test grades improved, administrators often told me I was inconsistent in classroom management and I was not challenging the kids enough. In some ways, it's true.
While I certainly hold myself responsible for much of my sub-standard practices (though I will emphasize it was not due to lack of passion or desire to improve), I think some of the blame can come from lack of mentorship. I won't bore you with details, suffice it to say that while I had mentors in name, they did very little for me in deed and I did not learn anything from them at all. So, now that I've had the chance to think about all this, I'm realizing that it might be a good idea to take the initiative and find some help for my issues before trying to re-enter a classroom.
So, having said all that, I am open to advice from anyone, but if you teach secondary English, that would be even better. I will take advice on any subject (lesson plan development, classroom management, etc.), but ultimately, I would like to collaborate with someone - almost like a teacher/student so I might get the basics I didn't get before.
And with that, I'll be on my way. Thanks for reading and I hope to hear from someone soon!