A personal interview was conducted between me, the interviewer, and Mary Sullivan, a teacher with multi-age classroom experience. The questions were prewritten, asked, and answered during the interview. The interviewee's answers are as follows:
How long have you been a teacher?
"Well, more than 20 years. I started teaching in 1987 just after I graduated from college. I worked full time for a few years then, when we started our family, I was a substitute teacher and did some homeschool consulting. When the kids were in grade school, I went back to full time."
What grades level and subjects do you teach?
"I've always worked with the primary grades, and have taught every grade from 2rd on up. For most of my career I taught 2th-4th grade, with language arts being my special love. I've had my hand in all grade-school level subjects -- math, science, spelling, PE, you name it. You know how it is."
When did you begin teaching in a multi-age classroom?
"I started teaching in a multi-age classroom in 1999, when I went back to full time teaching. When I first started teaching, I worked at a large grade school in the suburb of a large city. Then our family moved to a small town and I got involved with some homeschooling families. I offered my experience as a teacher to do some tutoring and educational planning. It worked out well because my two were 2 and 4 [years old] at the time, and they just came along with me. Homeschooling almost always involves multiples ages, since one mother will be teaching 3 or 4 or 5 children, each in a different grade.…