Friday, September 25, 2009

Who reminds you of why you became a teacher?

Last Saturday we asked the 2009 Cohort of Inspired Teaching Fellows to share stories about students who remind them of why they became teachers. This is a "word cloud" generated from their responses:

Here are synopses of what some of the fellows said:

(The names of students have been removed to respect their privacy.)

I am a teacher because of M. On your average day he is way too cool for school, roaming the halls, skipping class. But one afternoon I sat with him to talk and after all of my questions he’s been doing work and is more trusting of me.

~ Travis Barnwell, Middle School English Teacher

I am a teacher because of S. Before parting ways at the end of this week, we had a caring conversation and I had the chance to ask him a lot of questions. I tried to show him we care for him and we will continue to do so. That’s why we’re here.

~ Tim Street, Kindergarten Teacher

I am a teacher because of J. She gets into trouble for being to dramatic and wild in other classes, but in English class she comes alive. She loves making meaning out of personal experience, reading aloud, demonstrating the emotional component of what we read. She is such a strong leader. Every day I get a hug from her and she says, “you know you’re my favorite teacher, right?”

~ Anne Atwell-McLeod, Middle School English Teacher

I am a teacher because of N. He reminds me of myself at his age, needing a guiding hand in keeping his mind occupied with meaningful work so he doesn’t get bored and in trouble by doing something else.

~ Rob Otterstatter, Middle School English Teacher

I am a teacher because of D. He failed his even/odd quiz and was having lots of problems. But afterschool I saw him crying and asked why. I found out he was being bullied and he asked to come to my room to do homework. We went over his quiz and after only a few minutes he grasped the entire concept and was able to redo all his problems.

~ Catherine Currie, 2nd Grade Teacher

I am a teacher because of M. He is very active and easily distracted by books. Whenever we are doing something in a circle he wanders off to the library and gets lost in a book. I worry that someone is going to squish this love for reading and thirst for information so I try to encourage it whenever I can.

~ Monique Phillips, Pre K Teacher

I am a teacher because of J. She is excited and enthusiastic about learning, sometimes to the extent of being deafeningly loud. I am always patient with her volume control issues because the reward of seeing her face light up is so great. But I have seen her completely shut down when other adults get angry with her (for screaming). She reminded me that she needs a teacher like me.

~ Allison Rose, 2nd Grade Teacher

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