Wednesday, July 8, 2015

All About Me

I discovered my "All About Me" book from Mrs. Slisinger's 5th grade class.  I completed the book in April 1987.  It includes a birth certificate, family tree, wanted poster, my story, firsts for me, hobbies and interests, facts about my school, all time favorites, my friends, what I want to be, likes and dislikes and special letters. 

I thought it would be neat to read some of the book and answer the same prompts now.  I also think an "All About Me" journal might be one of my 9th grade students first journals this fall. 

Here's my "Wanted Ad" from 1987:
Here's what my Wanted Ad would say today in 2015: 

Name:  Jennifer Lynn (Taylor) Howe

Serial Number:  123456788

Alias:  Jen Taylor, Jen Howe, Frau Taylor, Frau Howe, Mom, Chelsea's Mom, Katie's Mom

Address:  Auburn Hills, MI

 Birth date:  December 8

Born:  Kettering, Ohio

Height:  5' 5"

Hair Color:  brown

Eye Color:  brown

Interests:  reading, writing, teaching, traveling

Hobby:  taking adventures with my girls

Last seen: at the playground at McGregor Elementary

Wearing:  faded blue jeans, black tennis shoes, and a t-shirt that says, "full-time TEACHER/all-time MOM/Sleep?  What's that?"

Special remarks:  Often heard speaking German or seen running after two curly-haired kids

Hangs Around With:  Chelsea and Katie

Favorite Subject:  Life

Car She Drives:  Silver Dodge Dart

Favorite Food:  Pizza


Here's my "What I Want To Be.."  from 1987


Here's my reflection on that today:

I think I'm grown-up.  I have two kids of my own and am responsible for classrooms full of kids.  I'm turning 40 in December.  Looking back, I see that my 11- year-old self had a few things figured out. 

1.  I am an actress. I'm not in movies or on television, but each day I look myself in the mirror, wonder if I'm ready for the world, and am "on stage" for a small audience of the two small children in my house or for a larger audience of the high school age students in my classroom.  I'm okay at following a script, but I'm way better at improvising as things come up (and something unexpected always does!).  Sometimes I do a great job of staying in character as a calm, patient, responsible adult.  Other times (most of the time), I'm just real, and you get what you get. 

2.  I'm also a teacher.  I teach the two small children in my home and I teach high school students Reading, Language Arts, and German.  I live some of their high school drama, but I try not to teach that!  Instead you can find me sitting up front for most of Lake Orion's theater performances.  Teaching is part acting, part managing, part leading, part facilitating, and part stepping back and letting your students prove they don't need you any more.  It's ALL heart, and it's all real.  You get what you get, and I get a whole lot more back than what I give. 

3.  Being an actress/teacher/adult is hard, but with a lot of grace and support, I seem to be handling it. 

Here's something my fifth-grade self didn't think of.  We are all always learning, discovering, changing and growing.  I still don't know exactly what(who) I'm going to be, but I have some good ideas. 

Thank you, Mrs. Slisinger, for pushing my 11-year-old self to reflect on this. 

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