Why, hello, my corner of the internet. How’s it going?
As Ecclesiastes reminds us, there’s a time for everything. Today, it’s September 7, 2022, and for Sra. Musicuentos, it’s time to come back.
You may not know me. Let’s see if I can condense this into a nice bio overview.
In the fall of 2008, in my fifth year of teaching, I gushed daily to my husband over my newfound strategies in TL storytelling and the power of music in my classroom and how all of it reflected so much of what I had just learned in my studies for my M.A. in Linguistics. In one of those moments that becomes a turning point in your life, he said, “You should start a blog.”
(A what? Remember, 2008.)
But I did. Musicuentos was born, and for the next 11 years, I had an absolute blast sharing what I was learning and creating and failing at and winning at. I got to hold my own curriculum development workshop, Camp Musicuentos, and travel from Las Vegas to Little Rock to Raleigh to learn along with you at conferences, including keynote addresses to the Tennessee and North Carolina world language teacher associations. Along the way, I began also developing story-based elementary Spanish curriculum for one company.
600 posts, 3 kids, a whole lot of class periods, and a diagnosis of multiple sclerosis later, I decided to narrow my professional life down to just 1 job. It was a hard choice, but I decided to stop teaching, consulting, workshopping, and blogging, and “just” work on that curriculum contract. I blogged a goodbye. I tried sharing a monthly newsletter for a while, but even that became too much to juggle with navigating being mom of 3 and trying to help run a company as COVID changed the world.
So, what has changed now? In a very unexpected change this summer, after 11 years creating curriculum and even managing the company’s small global team, I made the difficult decision to leave my one contract I’d kept, over differences in curriculum development philosophy. So, I’ve found myself in a bit of an identity crisis. I’d worked for so long to support elementary schools with engaging story-based curriculum starring characters like Pedro the plucky blue fish and the always-hungry Raúl the mouse and the entrepreneurial sheep Ofelia. I’d felt so validated as teachers told me, “You’ve saved me hours of work!” and parents told me, “My kids are begging to do more Spanish!” and supervisors were thrilled to find comprehensive support for paraprofessionals. Now, I’ve found myself asking,
Who am I without Pedro?
For the past month, I’ve spent a lot of time thinking while doing things I didn’t have a lot of time for before. I’ve been weeding and organizing cabinets. I keep up with the laundry. I talk to my kids as I taxi them around the city and don’t think about when I have to get back on my computer. My Chrome window is often down to two or three tabs. I got my email from 300 to 12. Twelve emails! It’s a brave new world over here.
As I weeded and folded laundry and thought about my new journey without Pedro, I contemplated drastic changes. Turns out I’m too old to train as an FBI agent. Retail and fast food require too much standing. And honestly, I know what I’m good at. Why try something else, if I don’t have to?
So, I can’t tell you where this new journey is headed. I’ve purchased a new domain and toyed with the idea of online courses. My software engineer husband’s mind is whirring with how we could partner to support learners. I’ll be shaping up my TPT store, slowly but surely. I’m attending my state conference this month! And, most importantly, I’ll be back where I was always meant to be- I’m teaching middle and high schoolers at a homeschool co-op, beginner Spanish and also a business class, starting this Friday. Time to rewind 11 years and revisit my post on the first days of Musicuentos Spanish 1.
Sometimes, the journey ends. Other times, it turns out to be a circle.
Welcome to my circle. Welcome back to Musicuentos.