I originally created this blog when I decided to write a book of the same name: How to Help Your Child with Fifth Grade Mathematics.
My name is Richard Walker, and I worked as a fifth grade teacher for over sixteen years at a public elementary school in San Francisco, California. Then I began teaching in the district in which I lived, where my two sons went to school, in Millbrae, California. I continued to teach fifth grade students for three years.
As of this writing – June 2017 – I am preparing to teach sixth grade students for the first time in my teaching career. Accordingly, I have changed the focus of this blog, as a journal of my experiences moving from teaching elementary school students to teaching English/Language Arts and Social Studies to sixth grade students.
I have renamed this blog after the Ralph Waldo Emerson quote: “Life is a succession of lessons which must be lived to be understood.”
Besides being a teacher, I am a writer. I have written eight novels as part of National Novel Writing Month, affectionately known as NaNoWriMo. I also wrote a screenplay of one of my novels as part of Script Frenzy, a companion activity to NaNoWriMo, sadly now defunct. I write poems from time to time, and post them on my blog, Sadly Waiting for Recess.
I decided to write a book for parents as part of Camp NaNoWriMo, starting in April 2013. I initially decided to publish my book through Leanpub. I have since retired that book, as I have moved on from teaching both mathematics and fifth grade students.
The purpose of this blog is to record my experiences as a teacher, specifically, as I transition from elementary school to middle school, and generally, because teaching is my calling.