About Me

I came to the world of teaching rather late in life. I had started down that path in college, but I found myself taking baseball sage Yogi Berra’s advice at every turn: “When you arrive at a fork in the road, take it.” In retrospect, I think I should have known that I was destined to be a teacher; after all, my first real job involved supervising kids not much younger than myself at the local YMCA, and a few years later I spent a summer as a camp counselor. While studying education and sociology in college, however, I learned that teaching jobs were becoming scarce, so I embarked on a search for something else to justify my existence. I developed my love of music into a low-paying gig, subsidized it with low-paying odd jobs, and managed to be pretty happy. Another fork loomed ahead, though—courtship, love, marriage, a house that needed refurbishing, children—and I took it. Now a househusband and father, I was approached by working parents in need of child care. I was soon a licensed, pioneering, male daycare provider with a surfeit of infants and toddlers. I had come full circle, back to nurturing youngsters, and I realized what I had to do. When our youngest reached school age, I returned to college and earned a teaching certificate, continuing to provide care for after-school kids. After a year of subbing, I was hired to teach second grade, where I developed a few of the lessons that appear in my book. At the end of that first year, my principal assigned me to teach first grade the next, where I learned that only saints can handle that job. As promised, though, I was returned to second, and I stayed there for several years before being hired away to try my hand at sixth grade in another school. It was my final fork; I became the writing specialist for 125 students. Together, we learned to write from the heart, wherein resides our truth.