Emmet Rosenfeld was an English teacher at Thomas Jefferson High School for Science and Technology in Alexandria, Virginia. He had 13 years of experience as a teacher and writer when he started this blog. In this opinion blog, he chronicled his experiences as he worked toward certification from the National Board of Professional Teaching Standards. This blog is no longer being updated, but you can continue to explore these issues on edweek.org by visiting our related topic pages: certification & licensing.
It’s 11:44 am on Monday, June 4, 2007, and I am done, baby. Flying high. I feel so good after speed-typing through six half hour essays that I’m sitting at my keyboard in the man zone to write a seventh, just to capture the moment. After a year plus of what has at times felt like biblical agony, I planted my flag in the summit this morning. And now I can truly say, I have been to the mountain.
Nearly a month ago, I wrote about putting one foot in front of the other as I trudged through Entry One ("Day by Day", March 10). Here is another week-in-the-life now that I’m done with the portfolio, to show how much lighter my step has become. While there’s not much about National Board per se, Tuesday’s overnight trip was a memorable stage in the canoe project I wrote about for Entry Four.
Forgot I signed up for a conference at GMU and almost don't go (the looming portfolio deadline is a handy excuse). I compromise and just hit the keynote speaker, Kelly Gallagher, super teacher and author of Deeper Reading and Challenging Adolescent Writers. He wears a black sweater, has intense blue eyes, and focuses like a laser on learning. Hearing him is a shot in the arm, as these things are, once one drags one’s butt to them. His ideas echo in my head all week.