How It All Began...
I have always wanted to be a teacher. I'm not sure how I knew, I just did. When I was little (six or seven) I would play "school" and I was always the classroom teacher. My sister was always the student. I would make her read to me, solve addition and subtraction problems, and take spelling tests. I like to think that this was why my sister was such a good student...I gave her a great start!
I remember having great teachers growing up! I think they helped begin my pat to teaching! Mrs. Eckerman, my first grade teacher, made me feel special every time I read aloud to her. She always praised me! Mrs. Determann, my third grade teacher, created the neatest projects! My favorite took place during a really bad thunderstorm; she had us sit on the floor under the windows and write about what was happening outside. We got to paint scenes from our stories and hang them up. Our thunderstorm paintings and stories filled the hallway! In fifth grade, Mrs. Klaus was awesome! She was the first teacher who made me feel grown up! She was the teacher who helped prepare me for middle school. Today, whenever I see her, I always say hello.
Finally, I my absolute favorite teacher was my high school biology teacher Mr. Ramaker. He was kind, but very strict. He was so smart ~ he really knew his "stuff." He knew how to teach biology to everyone and make it fun! The information he would share would really hook us and made me feel like learning biology was the most important thing in the world. He used to say that he could teach us anything, but it was up to us to learn it! We had to be responsible, listen in class, be prepared with all our materials, study our notes, do our homework each day, and be ready for tests when they came. He told us that it was our "job" and it was important to show everyone that we took our "job" seriously. As he said this, he would smile and you just knew that he really cared about you and how you did in his class. I wanted to "learn" biology because I knew he would be proud...I became proud of myself too!
By the time I was out of high school and in college, I knew my path was set. I would be a teacher! I wanted to be like Mrs. Eckerman, Mrs. Determann, Ms. Klaus, and Mr. Ramaker. I would be an educator who made a difference in the life of a student. I would be someone whom students remembered when they were adults. I would be a positive voice for students, an advocate for learning...a role model.
Now that I have been teaching for 11 years, I think I am getting closer. Each year I hope that I inspire and influence my students...give them positive learning experiences...make them feel valued. I hope I create a teacher!