Thursday, March 31, 2011

My Experiences with Children and Why I Want to be a Teacher

I have wanted to be a teacher my entire life.  My mother is an elementary school principal and my father is a fourth grade teacher so I have grown up with educators.  When I was younger, my sister and I would play “school” in our free time.  I was always the teacher and she was all of the students.  In junior high I started tutoring elementary school students after school.  I would work one-on-one with students on reading and math.  In addition to tutoring students, I would also make copies, laminate posters, put up bulletin boards, and do anything else that the teacher wanted me to do.  This is a volunteer job that I kept throughout high school. 
            During the summer, starting my freshman year of high school, I worked at a two-week summer school.  Camp MARS is a summer school held at my high school that provides kindergarten through sixth grade students with additional assistance in math and reading.  I was a teacher assistant and my jobs included making copies, recess and lunch duty, and assisting the teacher in educating the students.  I worked with one boy with a disability, which helped me understand some of the things we talk about in my Intervention Specialist classes at Mount Union.  I formed positive relationships with my co-workers and looked forward to working there every summer.  I just recently applied to work there again this summer in hopes to gain more knowledge about how to best educate students. 
            This past summer I also had a job at the Village Early Childhood Center, a local daycare.  There are children from newborn babies to second graders who attended the Village Early Childhood Center.  I was hired as the school-age teacher.  I made the lesson plans, decided when we did things each day, and disciplined the students.  We completed many craft projects, went to the park, and even went swimming at the quarry.  I had a lot of fun working at the Village Early Childhood Center.  The kids were wonderful and I go back to visit when I am home.  I hope to work there again this summer because I feel that I really benefited from being organized and planning what the children did each day.
            While attending Mount Union I have observed two different classrooms.  Last year I observed Mrs. McCamon’s second grade class at Washington Elementary.  I learned a lot and really enjoyed this age group.  Mrs. McCamon is an excellent teacher and she provided me with copies of many of the activities she did with her students.  This year I am observing Mrs. Offenbecher’s kindergarten class at the Alliance Early Learning School.  I have been with them for the entire school year and it is amazing to see how much the students have grown.  I have observed a child with Autism go through the process of being diagnosed, which is something many students do not get the chance to experience.  I always look forward to going and observing in Mrs. Offenbecher’s classroom.
            I have always wanted to be a teacher.  My experiences with children and education throughout my life have confirmed my reasons for being a teacher.  I love kids and I love seeing them grow.  I have had wonderful education professors at Mount Union who have made me realize that teaching is right for me.  I believe that being a teacher is one of the most rewarding jobs available and I cannot wait to graduate and start my teaching career. 

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