Tuesday, May 13, 2014

Washington Week: People to People Monument Tour

It's Election Day. Other than making my way to the polls some time today, I'm free until 5:30 this evening. I did not realize how exhausted I was until I came home two Fridays ago. Not complaining - the next few posts I share with you over the upcoming days were some of the surreal experiences of my life. It's just that all the travel, lack of sleep, and stress from the past few months has reached its zenith. I've done a lot, and a lot alone. That takes it's toll on anyone after a while.

On April 27th I headed to Washington, D.C. for Teacher Recognition Week. If you would have asked me back in October when this all started if I deserved to go to Washington on a trip that would culminate with meeting the President, I would have said no. However, in the last 6 1/2 months I have done everything I can physically and mentally do to represent and recognize the teachers of my state. This position doesn't come with a guide book, just a lot of recognition and bucket loads of guilt for the students and family members that have to do without your presence. I have brought the same commitment to this role as I did for 10 years in the classroom. Are there countless teachers that deserve national recognition for their contributions to education. Absolutely. Do I feel that I am finally among them? I do.

The majority of the other state teachers of the year arrived by Sunday evening. To reintroduce everyone and to relax after a long day of traveling (the state and territory teachers of the year hail from as far away as American Samoa and the Northern Mariana Islands), we were taken on a bus tour of the monuments, sponsored by People to People Ambassador Programs. Before the tour, we had a reception at a building that overlooked none other than...the Capitol Building.


I'm here!


Afterwards, we began our tour of the following memorials: Washington Monument, World War II, Martin Luther King, Jr., and Lincoln Memorial. Having lived 90 minutes from D.C. my entire life, it's easy to take for granted how amazing it is to live so close to a national capital. Visiting Washington was a once-in-a-lifetime experience for many of the teachers to bring back to their schools and classrooms.
World War II Memorial

WWII Memorial with Washington Monument in the Background

Washington Monument

Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial

Front View of the MLK Memorial

View of the Jefferson Memorial

Reflecting pool view from steps of Lincoln Memorial

Lincoln Memorial

We had beautiful weather that evening - which was fortunate, considering we would have rain for the next three days. All of the beautiful memorials to the history of our nation we saw that evening were just the foundation for the amazing events that were soon to follow.

1 comment:

  1. Great post, Erin! Glad you shared this with the world!