Monday, August 18, 2008

What’s it like to be an ....Independent Consultant?

My job title is:  President/Owner
My actual position is (if this differs from job title): Independent Consultant at present time. 
What does a normal day look like? Is it consistent throughout the year? If you’ve had this position for a while, how have things changed?
A normal day starts out with reviewing results of marketing programs from prior day/week. Review information reports from research or database analysis.  Review program results summaries from completed database marketing programs.  Review (and approve) pro forma ROI plans for upcoming direct marketing activities, including discussion of test plans and test investment.  Many days include meetings with product development (for research), line management (customer satisfaction measures), IT (for projects/problems being addressed) and direct marketing teams in Marketing.  Most weeks there is a meeting/update for senior managers.  Special projects require meetings with various members of senior and mid level managers.

Often I met with outside vendors to learn about new information available for the customer database, or new statistical techniques that can help group customers for improved marketing performance.



Posted by Bonnie Speyers on 08/18 at 01:23 PM

What’s it like to be a ....Director of Curriculum and Instruction?

What does a normal day look like? Is it consistent throughout the year? If you’ve had this position for a while, how have things changed? 
Everyday is different. I might be doing “administrivia”(creating budgets, investigating textbooks for purchase, keeping up with current state GLCEs or HSCEs, acting as the district contact for MEAP and MME), training teachers, modeling lessons in classrooms, planning with school improvement teams, working with building principals, etc.  Over the last few years, we have become much more focused on data; using the data from certain tests to help us to make good instructional decisions.  A great deal of my job has become gathering and interpreting data for principals and school improvement teams. The use of technology has exploded and trying to keep teachers up to date with shrinking funds has been a challenge.

What other, if any, positions have you held prior to your current job? How did you get to where you are now? 
I was at preschool teacher and director for 15 years, then I taught Kindergarten and 1st grade for another 14 years.  At the end of my career, I was an elementary principal (K-4) and finally, the Director of Curriculum and Instruction for a 3500-student district. (All except the preschool part of my career has been in the same district.)


Posted by Bonnie Speyers on 08/18 at 01:03 PM

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

What’s it like to be a….Tax Preparer?

My job title is:
Enrolled Agent-Enrolled to practice before the IRS. The IRS gives two days of exams to certify a tax preparer knows the tax laws well enough to appear for clients before the Internal Revenue Service on the same basis as Attorneys.  I also have a Masters in Tax from Golden Gate University, a business school in San Francisco.

My actual position is:
Tax Consultant, Tax Preparer

What does a normal day look like?
I meet with clients who want tax returns prepared and consult with clients who have tax issues.  I organize the tax information that clients bring me according to tax accounting rules, prepare tax returns, give tax advice and contact the state and federal taxing authorities on my client’s behalf.



Posted by Bonnie Speyers on 08/12 at 02:53 PM

Tuesday, August 05, 2008

What’s it like to be a…Pre-school Teacher?

My job title is:  Pre-school Teacher
My actual position is :
Wiper of noses, tie-er of shoes, singer/dancer/entertainer, tour guide through the wonderful world of new experiences. 
What does a normal day look like? Is it consistent throughout the year? If you’ve had this position for a while, how have things changed?
On a normal day, I get to school about an hour before the kids arrive and prepare the day’s activities.  This might mean filling the sensory table with sand or rice or water, laying out books that relate to the week’s theme, getting out supplies for a science experiment, setting up materials for the rotating group stations, cutting out pieces for crafts, etc.  This time is also spent talking with the other teachers on my team about any concerns or noteworthy items we have about individual students.  Then the kids arrive and we spend a few minutes looking at books together until everyone gets there.  Next we have circle time (calendar, weather, prayer time, letter of the week).  After this comes a bathroom stop, followed by snack.  Following that, we split up into our rotating groups; and the kids go around to three stations, each manned by one of the team teachers - the reading room, the science/creative center, and the math/music/manipulatives center.  Each center has a specific learning activity each day that relates to the theme and/or letter of the week. An “educational play” type of activity to fill the rest of the time at that center.  After these rotations are complete, we have large motor play time either outside on the playground or inside on the play equipment (dependent on weather). Then the kids go home.  This sequence is repeated for the afternoon class.  After the kids go home, I spend a little while planning lessons and preparing materials for upcoming days or weeks.

During most of the year this schedule is pretty consistent.  In the weeks just prior to parent-teacher conferences, we spend a lot more time observing kids’ skills on specific activities so we can report their progress to their parents.  In the week just before the Thanksgiving, Christmas, or spring program, we spend quite a bit of time preparing and practicing for the program.

I’ve only taught preschool for one year, so I haven’t seen it change at all yet!



Posted by Bonnie Speyers on 08/05 at 10:46 AM
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