I think I had to realize that not all students are like I was when I was
a student. So I really had to
adjust my expectations. It’s a
balancing act because you don’t want to set your expectations so low
that your students aren’t challenged, but you don’t want to set them so
high that students see them as unattainable.
So in order to find that balance you have to be willing to adjust
– thinking on your feet becomes really important!
My time at GCC prepared me for teaching in a spiritual way.
I had a lot of professors who were really great role models as
people and as teachers. I learned
that teaching was something God was calling me to do, not just a career.
I learned to model my role as a teacher after Jesus the Master
Teacher (thanks, Dr. Mackey). I
also had a lot of support from my math professors, especially Dr.
McIntyre, Dr. Thompson and Mr. Dean.
You have to realize that your first year of teaching is going to be a
learning experience and you are going to be far from perfect.
Lessons will not go the way you think they should.
It’s okay to admit that—just reflect on the positives and
negatives and make notes to yourself about how you can improve for next
year. Then, realize that next year
isn’t going to be perfect either but understand you will keep getting
better. Don’t be afraid to try
new things even though some will fail miserably.
That’s how you learn. Be
humble enough to accept and seek out advice from other teachers.
Finally, maintain a balance between work and things you enjoy
doing outside of work. If
you teach all day and then go home and work on lessons or grade papers
all evening after work, you will burn out.
Maintain your hobbies, even if it means putting off some work for a day.
I became a runner once I started teaching and I enjoy running
after school. It helps me to
clear my head, work out some stress and feel refreshed.
It’s been a long time since I’ve had to look for a job, I’m not
aware of all of the online resources available for job searching, so I’m
probably not the person to ask about this, but I can tell you to pray
My decision was mainly a practical
one. Just knowing I had a few years to earn more credits and obtain my
Level II certification, I found a Master’s program that interested me, and
my friend and I decided to do it together.