Let's rewind to the spring of 2016 when some of my friends and myself went to Florida for the Get Your Teach On conference with Deanna Jump from Mrs. Jump's Class and Hope King from Elementary Shenanigans. We came back to school filled with tons of amazing ideas and a renewed drive to spread joy to others.
In August 2016, a bunch of friends and myself were on another adventure to a conference sponsored by Ashley Schroeder from Schroeder Shenanigans in 2nd. Ron Clark was the guest speaker at this wonderful conference. The car ride home was spent searching for grants, looking at our school calendar, looking at the RCA calendar, and researching flights to Atlanta. At one point during the drive home, it got very silent in the car because the thought of "what if we can't figure this out" began to set in. However we were determined this was going to work.
That brings us to September 2016...we bought tickets to Atlanta not knowing whether we were going to be able to find funding to go to RCA. We decided even if we didn't get funding, we would be going to Atlanta for the weekend because the tickets were to good to pass up. We finally found a grant that was focused on social and emotional learning. We thought professional development at RCA fit that grant criteria perfectly, but then it was the waiting game to see if our application would be granted. We waited and waited (and secretly from each other we kept checking the RCA website to see if October 21st was still open). The good news finally came that our application was accepted. My phone began dinging as the text messages flew from our phones to each other. We were over the moon excited.
Fast forward to t-minus 19 hours... I have checked in for my flight, suitcase is packed, and tons of thoughts are flying around my head. What will it feel like when I enter RCA? Is RCA really like Disneyland for teachers? Will I (a kindergarten teacher) be able to take back any useful information to my classroom from a middle school? What relationships will I build while at RCA? I have 7 1/2 hours of parent-teachers conferences tomorrow and then I can begin my teacher field trip (which is how I explained it to my students).