Rose Kimble always looks forward to the beginning of March, when she can celebrate Dr. Seuss week with her students.
She loves teaching them about traditions and food from around the world during Culture and Diversity week and helping them make gifts for their loved ones during the holidays.
For the past 10 year, “Ms. Rose” has been a friendly face for the students at My Place Childcare.
“Every day is different, it’s a different class in a different way, “ she said. “You fall in love with the kids. I don’t ever wake up and say, ‘Ugh, I have to go to work!”
Growing up, Rose would always tell people she wanted to be a teacher.
“I always wanted to make a difference in a child’s life the way my teachers did for me,” she said. “My teachers were always there to support me.”
After attending Newark High School and C-TEC — where she studied culinary arts – Rose worked with LICCO Inc. to find a job. They encouraged her to fill out an application at My Place.
She got the chance to work with all different age groups and spent some time teaching toddlers and 3-year-olds. But she found her niche teaching 4 year olds getting ready to turn 5 and go to kindergarten.
As the lead teacher in a room of 14 students, Rose has grown into a leader at the center, said Shaun Linton, owner of My Place.
“She has really been open to learning new things and improving herself professionally,” he said. “She develops strong relationships with the kids. They enjoy being with her every day.”
Not only is she extremely dependable, but she took the initiative to earn her Child Development Associate (CDA) credential, he said.
Deciding to pursue her was a big step for Rose in her career path.
Over the years, she’d been told that she wouldn’t be able to complete college coursework. Hearing that crushed her, but it also motivated her to succeed.
“I was proving that even though I couldn’t go to college, I was able to get my CDA and show people I can do it, there is another path to try,” she said.
She enrolled in the CDA classes with a friend and completed the 120 hours of instruction on Zoom.
Her friends and support system at work rallied around her. My Place provided her with a laptop to complete the classes and her friends helped edit her papers.
That experience reinforced why she has stayed at My Place for 10 years.
“I’ve never been at a place where I’ve had the support system I’d had here,” she said.
She’s hoping her story helps others who are feeling discouraged that their goals are possible, especially if they have supportive people around them.
“I don’t want people to think that they can’t, because if they want to, there’s a way to succeed,” she said. “I wasn’t able to be a kindergarten or first grade teacher (like I originally wanted to) but I found a way to be a teacher.”