As an educator I have had the privilege of teaching 9th and 10th grade World History CP, 8th & 11th United States History CP, and Ethnic Studies.
Currently I teach 8th grade US History
Why I became a teacher:
My journey to become an educator was not always clear. As a child I was OBSESSED with Law & Order and wanted to be a detective so bad. As I grew older I realized I just wanted to help people and becoming a therapist was my new goal. I began pursuing a degree in the field of Psychology directly out of high school, but as I advanced in my studies, I realized that I was not synergizing with my studies and I felt relatively "off". I took a hiatus from college and focused on work where I fell in love with teaching after finding a long-term sub position at my alma mater. It was in that classroom that I fell in love with teaching. It was there that I realized I enjoyed going to work everyday and it is there that I decided to return to school and change my entire educational & professional trajectory.
I re-enrolled in college, changed my major from Psychology to History and quickly graduated magna cum laude and received a Bachelors of Arts in History as well as a minor in Anthropology and an Associates Degrees in Religious Studies. After my Bachelors I returned for my Masters in Education which I received with a 4.0 GPA.
My passion for teaching stems from my personal experiences in my own educational journey through primary and secondary school. Attending a privatized educational institute led me to realize that my educational experience was vastly different and honestly a disservice to my educational journey. My classes were very linear and censored. The curriculum was designed to limit exposure to non-religious education and therefore led to a lot of censorship, specifically in the social sciences. I always felt like I was missing a part of the history of our nation and the history of the world, and after attending college, I was correct.
In addition to the academic inspiration, I am also inspired to be the best educator I can be due to the role my teachers played in my life throughout high school. I possess high doubts that I would be the person I am today without the guidance and support of those high school teachers. Despite the catered curriculum, the teachers remained consistent with their love for their students. My teachers got me through some really dark times in my life and I remember their impact on me even now as an adult.
As an educator I want to provide these two things: Access to the information I was sheltered from and access to a support system for each and every one of my students who needs it. These two things drive me to be the best teacher that I can be.
If you have read the "Why I became a teacher" portion of this page you may already have an inclination of what my pedagogy is.
The largest inspiration towards my pedagogy is the work of Rudolf Dreikurs. A child psychologist with a focus on children within the classroom. Dreikurs' work saw a result that I could not agree with more: treat the students with respect. Essentially, students crave organization, structure, and expectations, but they need and desire respect as well. Without respect your students will not possess the drive that you wish to see in them. If an educator divides the classroom dynamic by implementing a hierarchical structure of superior - inferior (teacher - student) that refuses to respect the students due to their status of inferiority they will only find that their actions hinder the growth of their students.
Respect between teacher and student is critical to the success of a classroom since it will develop and build rapport between teacher and student. This mutual respect will build rapport with the students and allow a more genuine discussion around history specifically regarding topics that include immigration, religion, sexuality, gender, ethnicity, race, and other potentially "controversial" topics. The respect given to students will result in a comfortability within the classroom since no student will feel like they are unheard or unseen.
In addition to this, I am a firm believer in Rosenthal's Pygmalion Effect. Students will rise to the expectations that we possess for them. As educators if we believe in our students and hold high expectations the students will rise to the occasion. If we hold lower expectations for our students or fall into deficit thinking then we will be contributing to a self-fulfilling prophecy. Perhaps it is best summarized with this quote popularly attributed to Henry Ford, "Whether you believe you can do a thing or not, you are right."
My goal is to provide a rigorous and challenging education to all my students that has them questioning why they believe what they believe and how to defend their stances. I believe allowing students to defend their viewpoints in school will lead them to be a more well-rounded, thought provoking citizen who can make educated and informed decisions for the rest of their life.