Craig schoolteacher a collector of quotable quotes
CRAIG — A career in education helped East Elementary School fourth-grade teacher Josiah Grubbs discover work that would make life better for himself and others.
Initially, Grubbs found himself working at a job he hated, and it helped him learn what he loves and make the leap to teaching.
“As I get older, I have a better understanding that life is precious, and you should make the most of every day,” Grubbs said.
Grubbs finds quotes that inspire him and the children he teaches.
He said, “I tend to use quotes a lot, but this one (by Will Smith) is a good example of how I live my life: ‘If you’re not making someone else’s life better, then you’re wasting your time. Your life will become better by making other lives better.’”
Grubbs shared more quotes and more about himself in the following interview.
Craig Press: Describe when you learned that you were meant to teach.
Josiah Grubbs: I initially went to school for business management. While going to school, I worked at the local YMCA, where I was involved in many different programs for kids. I have always loved working with kids but didn’t think I could make it a career, especially since I had a four-year degree in another field.
When I graduated, I got a job in sales, and I absolutely hated it. I think there is something to be said for working in a job that you, hate because most of that time is spent thinking about what you actually want to do. I came to the realization that I would either spend the rest of my life hating my job and make a good living, or I would take up the challenge of going back to school and pursuing my passion. I choose to go back to school, and it has been the best decision I have ever made. Life is too short to not be doing something that you love.
CP: Who most influenced you to become an educator, and how did that person influence you?
Grubbs: My seventh-grade science teacher, Mr. Crosby, had a profound impact on me as a learner and an individual. He challenged his students with meaningful and engaging hands-on projects that I still remember. I hope to achieve the same with my students — endless memories of accomplishments in fourth grade.
CP: If your greatest supporter were in the room with us today, what five words would he or she use to describe you?
Grubbs: Passionate, determined, kind, hardworking and unique.
CP: What is the most challenging part of your role as an educator, and how have you met that challenge?
Grubbs: My students deserve the best version of myself as a teacher. Therefore, I need to have a full understanding of the curriculum, best practices to deliver the content and how to implement new technology. The only way to achieve that is through hard work. I will never become the best teacher I can be, meaning that there will always be areas of continued growth.
CP: What have you read recently that led you to change your approach to your work?
Grubbs: I recently finished “No Shortcuts to the Top.” It is about a guy who climbed all 14 8,000 meter mountains without supplemental oxygen. A good book about pushing past your limits. This is one of my favorite quotes from the book: “The psychological challenge of being alone in a dangerous place for weeks intrigued me.”
I am currently reading “Kids Deserve It!,” which is about pushing yourself as an educator — giving your students your best every day by being prepared, creating detailed lessons and having the willingness to push the envelope for the betterment of your students.
CP: How are you involved in the community outside school?
Grubbs: This summer, I was able to coach 5 and 6-year-olds in Parks and Rec soccer and led a summer reading camp. I help coach at Lins FITT, a local Crossfit gym, which I recommend everyone to come try. I also did an after-school running program for third- through fifth-grade boys at East. At the end of the program, the boys had to complete a 5K around East Elementary, which was a blast. I plan on doing another one this spring.
CP: If a visitor came to your classroom and took a photo, what would they see?
Grubbs: They would see a family. I moved up here not knowing anyone, and I always tell my kids that they are my family. We struggle and persevere together. At PAWS assembly at East we say: “We love you; we love you a lot. It’s kind of our thing.” My kids know that I truly care about them.
CP: What is one fun fact about you?
Grubbs: That I am always up for a challenge. Whether it is cooking chili, working out, climbing a mountain or teaching. I enjoy pushing myself.
CP: Is there anything else you’d like readers to know?
Grubbs: I want to personally thank Sarah Hepworth and everyone at East. I cannot begin to describe what these past two years have meant to me. It’s amazing to me how quickly I was accepted and how close everyone became. I was able to grow professionally, and I will never forget the relationships I have formed. Even though I haven’t been here for that long, teaching at East will always be a part of me, and for that, I am forever grateful. Thank you, Sarah for allowing me to be a part of East.
Contact Sasha Nelson at 970-875-1794 or snelson@CraigDailyPress.com.
The Friends of the Hayden Library will host the second annual Art Show Opening Night from 5 to 9 p.m. Friday, Aug. 2 at Hayden Public Library, 201 E. Jefferson Ave.