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The Real Teacher Behind The Computer

Don't judge someone you don't truly know or understand.

Teaching - my hobby, my passion, my dream, my adventure. I knew ever since I was a young child of the age of 5 that I wanted to be a teacher. I played teacher with my stuffed animals, Cabbage Patch dolls and Barbies. I watched many of my elementary school teachers including my aunt and dreamt of being just like them. It was my dream and that dream never went away. After graduating from college with a Bachelor's degree in elementary education, my dream came true when I took my first job teaching 4th grade in a large school in a growing Utah community. I had over 30 students and was placed in a trailer classroom out on the playground. I began decorating and making that classroom my own! It was a circus! Literally chaos and the decor matched! I didn't know what I was doing but I didn't care. I knew that I had to be brave and try hard things and this in fact was a very hard thing but my dream was coming true. The day before my first day of school they decided to give me a classroom inside the building. What was already a circus became a chaotic circus as I took down everything and moved it into the building. 11 years later and I barely can remember names of my students and the fun lessons we did, but what I do remember is my willingness to accept challenge and never give up. 

Teaching is a difficult profession. Every single day we are faced with challenges. Student behavior, academic growth, and keeping up with the trends of the changing classroom. Each year has gotten better of course, as I have figured out how to teach and engage my students. In the last 11 years I have grown as a person and an educator. I've taught in 3 different states, 4 districts, 5 schools and 3 different grade levels. Each year is different and I have loved every single group I've taught. My teaching passion and dream of creating an environment full of creativity and active engagement has molded me into the teacher I am today. 5 years ago, I found out through a friend of a website that teachers could offer their creative ideas and lesson plans for other teachers. TeachersPayTeachers was a new thing back then to me and millions of educators. I dipped my toe in the blogging and TPT world little by little. My success didn't take off as quickly as some TPT sellers did, but like that first year of teaching, I never gave up. I put countless hours in creating activities for teachers on skills that I needed resources for in my own classroom and could benefit other teachers. I tried new things. I pushed myself into the social media world and gave that a try. It took 4 years to grow my little part time business and now The Creative Classroom is bigger than I would have ever imagined it to be. 

With this success of TPT and social media, I have found that some teachers question my intention as an educator. Recently a teammate of mine was asked by another staff member about me. This teacher wanted to know what it was like to work alongside me. She asked if I was "real" or if what I did was for show. My integrity of teaching was being questioned. As you could imagine, I broke down. I was hurt. Words can't describe how it feels for your hobby, passion, dream and adventure to be attacked. Luckily my sweet teammate offered the truth to this teacher and explained that I do go above and beyond for my students. No one can deny that. But what I do in my classroom, for my students is because I want to do it. I don't do it for bragging rights or to show off. I don't do it to compete. I do it because it's who I am. I'm The Creative Classroom. I was the same creative teacher long before TeachersPayTeachers.


This attitude that many teachers and others outside the education profession of comparing oneself to another can be very toxic and hurtful. I've realized now at the age of 33 that there is no good in comparing myself to another teacher, TPT seller, social media icon, friend or neighbor. I've spent so many times in tears because of hurtful things other women say about me and the things I have or do. Why do they care? What I have or what I do is for me. I don't do those things for attention or to put myself up on a pedestal. Let me be me. Let me do the things I want to do. I wish I could teach adults to stop judging people they don't know or even understand. I wish I could take away jealousy and judgment from the world because not only are we hurting others, we are teaching our children these toxic behaviors. Let's be examples of positivity in the world around us. Let's focus on those that truly value our hard work and creativity because they are the ones that matter most. Let's focus on those people in our lives that celebrate our success instead of questioning our intentions.

10 comments

  1. Replies
    1. DIVORCE AND MARITAL BREAKTHROUGH

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      DIVORCE AND MARITAL BREAKTHROUGH

      It all started when my husband cheated on me with another woman unknowing to him that the woman is a wizard, the woman castes a spell on my husband which made my husband change his feelings towards me and the kids and broke our 6 years marriage. i was confused and stressed because of the pains of being a single mother, when i called a friend and explained my marital challenges to her, she instructed and directed me to contact a great powerful spell caster called Dr. Ugo Wonders living in Florida. i contacted Dr. Ugo and explained my problems, he assured me his help and it was 100% guaranteed. i provided the materials for the spell and in 48 hours, after Dr Ugo Wonders of generalspelltemple@gmail.com finished casting the spell, my husband was free from the evil woman spell and he came back home to us a day after begging us to forgive him. i was so shocked and short of words and here i am today happily testifying so the world can know how this great man helped me with his real powerful spell.
      To every one with marital problem, divorce issues, lost lover or any relationship related issues, you can contact Dr. Ugo wonders the ultimate spell caster via his email address generalspelltemple@gmail.com or call his mobile number directly on +13863369876

      http://generalspelltempleblog.wordpress.com

      Delete
  2. This. All of it. I want all of my co-workers to read this. Thank you for sharing, thank you for staying true to you! Throw kindness like confetti and never let anyone anyone dull your sparkle!

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  3. So I read this and it really hit home! I've wanted to teach since I was about four, and like you, I had family that was teachers. I've been a TpTer for a few years and I learned you can't compare yourself. People will always judge, and that is because they are envious. It is horrible that people are cruel to others especially when we are supposed to be setting an example for the young kids. You are doing great Ashlyn, don't let anyone deter you. You are doing the best thing for your kids and you. That is what matters! Keep it up, girl. You are amazing and inspiring to teachers around the world!!
    Ronnie from A Teacher's Wonderland

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  4. Very well written. Sorry that you have had to go through this. You want what is best for students and that in and of itself tells the world that you are a great teacher. Keep your head high, stay focused on your goals and don't let your dreams out of sight. God bless.

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  5. I love this post. I agree and I have felt similar things. I actually started a teacher support group in my school that incorporates supporting colleagues, avoiding negativity and many other things that encourage being the best person and educator that we can be. I have been teaching for 14 years and knew that is what I was meant to do by 2nd grade (although, my mom says I talked about it all the time in kinder, but 2nd is when it was solidified). I am so grateful for those like you who are putting strength, kindness, and love for our calling out there into the world. Without the positive online community for support, things would be much tougher! Keep being you!

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  6. Thanks for sharing your story I have spent 13 years in teaching and was about to give up due to cold responses of management and many more other reasons.So thank you letting me know that I am not alone who is struggling.

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