A few weeks ago I had a meeting with the instructional coach at my school. I wanted his feedback on whether I was doing what a paraprofessional "should" be doing. I needed to know that I was doing what I was supposed to without overstepping my boundaries and stepping on my lead teacher's toes. I was really worried about that. While she knows how much I want to be a lead teacher, she deserves to run her classroom the way she wants - without me taking over. By the end of the meeting, I felt very reassured and confident that the administration could see how strong of an influence I am in the classroom.
The next day, Zeke (instructional coach) mentioned to me that there was a lead 3-year-old teacher position open and suggested that I apply. I did. I found out the next weekend that I had an interview. I tried to keep it on the down-low from my colleagues because I didn't want to get my hopes up or have it spread around the school (partially because I didn't want my potential competition to know about the opening - not very nice of me, I know). My interview went really well, according to my principal. I did not get the position - it went to another para at the school (who I am sure will do an incredible job - I'm glad he's the one who beat me out for that position).
Since that interview, I have tried to take a step back in the classroom. I try not to take control outside of the times when it is "acceptable". I have been doing lots of things that Kelsey doesn't tell me to do. I added colored water to the sensory table (spray it on foam peanuts!); I am working with the students on writing their names; and I made a turkey centerpiece with all the kids for Thanksgiving (thanks pinterest!). Slowly but surely I am finding my niche in the classroom.
I used solid colored paint chips and actually cut them into "feathers". The kids loved it!