About Me

I have been in the profession of education for over two decades. Last year was what I called the sunset of my career in the classroom. Looking back that was a nice metaphor for what I knew was me transitioning to something else, something different, so that I was maybe telling myself I was not just abandoning, quitting, or whatever other words one might have for leaving a job after so long. It did coincide with the first pandemic that I have experienced, which did make my decision maybe more or less complex.

And, here I am a couple of years into this blog, which I originally used to document my journey of the last year in the classroom, and now I am using to document my transition to my new career, as well as to write about all things important to me- math curriculum related topics. While teaching in elementary and middle school classrooms, in a variety of levels and locations, I have always dreamt of developing curriculum. While I love the moment students ‘get it,’ and I love being involved in shaping the future of our world through sparking the joy of learning for its own sake, personally what brings greatest satisfaction is creating the lessons and designing the learning.

In my last year of classroom teaching I was the math teacher for a small middle school in its third year of existence. I taught grade four, and also grades six through eight. It was an amazing professional experience because I was one of the founding members of the school, and we taught the students at their level, in a progressive way, striving for mastery over grades. I was able to truly learn what it meant by personalized learning. I taught myself, on the job training, how to develop curriculum and how to implement with validity. But, as the years of teaching, the two hours of commuting, and all the “other” that goes with a 24-7 job like teaching collided with personal and familial obligations, I had the epiphany that I could, and I SHOULD, do more. There has to be something beyond the classroom for me, and for sharing my dream and my passion with the field of education. Idealistic? Probably. But why not me?

As for my credentials, in case that matters to you. I have a B.A. in Psychology, an M.Ed. in Elementary Education, and an M.Ed. in Curriculum, Instruction, and Assessment. Beyond these degrees, I have taken many additional credits to earn the steps necessary for staying power in public school. I have taught in urban and suburban public schools, as well the aforementioned private school. After the events of the Covid-19 precipitated my leaving the classroom in the summer of 2020, I am now the Founder and Director of Curriculum and Instruction of Filling the Gap Educational Services. We provide a range of personalized educational services for students, families, and educators that focus on helping students fill learning gaps. That is the short of it, you can see the rest here… should you choose to:

http://www.fillingggap.com

Thanks for joining me in my journey.


“Don’t overthink it.”

-Mrs. Portnoy