An Incredible Career Moment

 Today I was reflecting on moments from my first year of teaching.  For me it started off with a BIG SURPRISE….

When I was in 4th Grade, I decided that I wanted to be a teacher.  Why?  Because I adored each of the teachers that I had been lucky enough to experience in my short life.  But my 4th grade teacher was what clinched it for me.  Her name was Mrs. Coleman, and she was tough.  Most of the kids at school didn’t want to ‘get’ her for their 4th grade year, because she was known for being strict.  But I loved everything about her.  A few things I particularly remember were the way she shared her Basque heritage, doing a simulation project on wagon trains, and learning Spanish.  Over the years, I followed my dream and as I graduated high school in 2001, I tried to locate Mrs. Coleman because I wanted to let her know that I was headed to the College of Education at the University of Idaho, and that she was the one who inspired me to chase this dream.  Unfortunately, I never could find her.  Fast forward five years to 2006.  I landed my first teaching job at a little town outside of Boise, Idaho called Star.  I only went on one teaching interview, and the moment I set foot in Star I knew it was meant to be.  I was told that I was one of three new teachers to the building- one was a transfer from within the district and would be teaching fourth grade with me.  I spent hours and hours in my new classroom that week before school started, and curiously peeked into the other 4th grade teacher’s classroom.  It was impeccably clean, decorated, and ready to go.  I remember sneaking into her classroom during the week to steal some ideas for my own room.  Finally, a few days before school was to start, all staff was on duty, and I was going to meet the teachers that I would be working with.

You can only imagine how far my jaw dropped to the floor when I saw who walked in the staff room that morning.  
Now her name was Liz Lejardi, but she was MY Mrs. Coleman – and even MORE insane than that?  She was my new 4th grade teaching partner! (p.s. Her name changed because she got divorced ๐Ÿ™‚

This was the woman that I had tried to locate so many times to thank for getting me to this exact moment in my life, and here she was!  I don’t even remember what I said to her, or if I made any sense!  Thankfully, she actually remembered me and I was able to thank her for being an amazing teacher! If I ever had any questions that I had accepted the right job, or that I was following the life path I was supposed to follow, they were answered.

What was the most memorable moment of your 
rookie teaching year?

Edit: I am linking this post up with ‘Frogs and Cupcakes’ for her Teacher Story Linky Party! {This is the first linky party I’ve ever joined! Yeah!}


  1. Just found your blog on TBA’s 4th grade blog list, what an incredible story. How did your first year go?
    My year as a rookie teacher was amazing!! There are so many memorable moments because I had an awesome group of students, a great mentor, and so many memorable events including being the privileged teacher to have a BMX bike rider do a flip in the air right above my head. I was surrounded by so many encouraging & wise educators that helped to shape my teaching effectiveness and allowed my creativity to flourish. I guess being recognized and/or celebrated for my dedication was the most meaningful. Happy to be your first follower!
    Antonia @ forkin4th

    • Antonia- My first comment! I feel like I should print it off and frame it! ๐Ÿ˜‰ Your first year sounded eventful! Mine was amazing as well- I don’t think I will forget a single one of those students as long as I live! We definitely had a unique bond! I’m headed over to Forkin4th to become a follower!

    • That is SOOOOOO special!!!! I wish I could teach with some of my former teachers!!! How wonderful!!!! Thanks for sharing!

      Tales of Frogs and Cupcakes

  2. WoW! What an amazing story! You had me in tears! I am so glad I found your blog!


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