Teaching on the Navajo Nation

(Kayenta and the surrounding area is really this pretty)

A friend recently emailed as my old school district is in need of many teachers for next year.  Let me just say this:  I. Loved. This. District.  Since I love a good list, here's why {cool} teachers should consider teaching for Kayenta Unified School District in very northern Arizona:

1.  The school district is on the Navajo Nation about two hours north of Flagstaff, AZ.  Flagstaff, by the way, is an adorable college town.
2.  My Navajo students and their families were loving, kind, and welcoming to me.  Since I am non-Navajo, my students took me under their wings and inviting me to rodeos, ceremonies, and special events.
3.  The Navajo Nation is an amazing place.  It is the size of West Virginia, spans into four states, is gambling- and alcohol-free, and is rich in culture and tradition.
4.  Have you wanted to live abroad, but haven't made the jump?  Living on the Navajo Nation, immersed in Navajo culture and language is a super way to feel like you are outside the regular USA, but still on US soil.
5.  As a teacher, you are paid well and provided housing at a very reduced rate.  I lived in a spacious one-bedroom apartment and paid $120/month for it.  
6.  I saved soooo much money when I lived in Kayenta as there aren't many places to spend money. When I lived there, we had six restaurants.  The Holiday Inn's restaurant was considered the nicest.
7.  If you like the outdoors, you are close to everything spectacular:  Two hours to the Grand Canyon, two hours to Moab, two hours to Telluride/Durango.  Mountain biking and hiking out your bike door, literally.
8.  The students.....oh, I loved my students.  Still do.  I keep in touch with a few of them.  Since most of my students were Navajo (about 98%), they were bilingual.  I remember trying to learn just a few "easy" words in Navajo, like Hello, and my students (after two years) would say, "You're not saying it correctly!"  Learning Navajo is challenging.  If you don't believe me watch the Wind Talkers movie.
9.  In Kayenta, I taught more students who earned a 3 or higher on their AP exams and earned college scholarships than I have ever taught anywhere else.  Smart kids, I tell ya.
10.  If you like snow, I also experienced more snow days off from school in Kayenta than when I lived in Colorado!  Yay, for high desert climates!

Consider teaching in Kayenta (if you are a great educator; lame-os don't apply).  Teaching there is true delight and pure amazingness.

Click here to see KUSD's latest job postings.  You could also start applying for your Arizona teaching license.  And by the way, obtaining a teaching license in another state isn't as crazy as everyone makes it out to be.  Believe me, I have three licenses in three different states.  Time and patience is all you need.

Ya at eeh,

Jen


2 comments:

  1. I loved this blog due the fact that the blog talks about teaching to students of a different race/culture. I believe that teaching to a diverse group of students is a very positive way to tell students how their classmates learn. Also children will also learn about other cultures.

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