Never say never: One week back to teaching for Chicago Public Schools

Never say never: One week back to teaching for Chicago Public Schools
As God would have it, my first week back to teaching was Teacher Appreciation Week. Each day we received a different gift to thank us, and it worked. I felt appreciated!

You’ve heard it said several times, but it doesn’t pack the same punch until you experience it for yourself:

“Never say never.”

These are the sentiments I’d spoken about teaching elementary phys ed and most certainly, I thought I knew like I knew my name, I’d NEVER teaching kindergarten gym again!

Yes friends, it’s true:

“Never say never!”

And you know what? I couldn’t have been more wrong.  This past week teaching K-6 PE classes has given me so much joy!  The very grade I said I didn’t want to teach again has been the very grade to overwhelm me love and wonder for life.  How energetic those little people are!

This past week, I’ve given motivational speeches, observed the funniest relay races, and shared my heart with eager souls sopping up my zeal for life, believing they can creating their highest, most grandest versions of themselves.

I’m humbled and honored.

I am so happy to be teaching elementary PE.

I am so happy to be teaching elementary PE.

I’m also reminded of how critical I’d been of administrators and teachers who seemed to preach one thing and yet practice another. There are many things that lead to the great chasm and dichotomy of teachers vs parents and charters vs public schools and minority teachers vs “outsiders” who seem ill equipped to handle and embrace the realities of the other races and cultures they serve. No matter the reason for the divide, if these children are to win, one thing’s for sure:

We’re all going to have to work together.

They say you know when your living in alignment with your assignment for life. While it seems complicated and stressful trying to figure out the color of your parachute and who moved the cheese, the reality is it’s really quite simple:

If it makes you’re happy, you’re doing the right thing.

It makes me happy to exercise with those kids, and teach them yoga, calming techniques, and watching them squeal with delight as they run like the wind racing their classmates. Of course, they love playing basketball and having free time and jump rope and all the other stuff kids love. And yes, they are attitudinal, and say some of the funniest things.  And there are also those who use profanity plain as day.  I stand there in awe because I know they are doing nothing but mirroring the behavior they see of their parents, so I don’t get too mad or upset or offended for they simply don’t know any better, and that’s why it’s our job to teach them otherwise.

I am so happy to be teaching again.  I’m eager to see just where this guides me. I’m also trading in the old adage to “never say never” for something much more fun and exquisite.  This time, I’ll let life guide me.

I am going with the flow.

About me: I’m a wife and mom of six daughters known as the “Fitness Evangelist” because of my ability to infuse the fun of exercise and perspiration with inspiration and fitness education.  My mother told me I am a natural teacher and “gifted” to teach people of all ages.  Because of soaring obesity rates and those who struggle with many controllable health-related issues, I also help people with their health and fitness goals any where in the world through my business with Total Life Changes. For more information about me, you can visit my website at or go directly to my TLC website for product information

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    Elana Anthony

    I am a wife and mother blessed to have six daughters who fill my home with love and laughter. My passion is writing and teaching, but most especially inspiring people to live healthy lives in my faith-filled fitness classes. My dream is to have my own faith and fitness TV show where people from all the world collectively join together on our "temple" building project of enjoying optimal health. I am a certified group fitness instructor by the Aerobics and Fitness Association of America (AFAA), and earned graduate degrees in Writing from DePaul University, in addition to a degree in Exercise Science and Health Promotion from the California University of Pennsylvania. I have seen and experienced the hand of God work and move in my life, and consider it an honor and blessing to be saved to serve.

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