What do you enjoy most about teaching? Teaching is a powerful occupation; it has the potential to impact change. As a Computer Science Teacher, I constantly enroll in courses to stay up to date with new and emerging technology topics. However, teaching is more than staying up to date with content. As a teacher it is vital to be familiar with content and with the needs of the students. Being aware of the needs of the students became a priority during the recent online teaching format. I actually enjoyed the virtual teaching experience last school year, because teaching virtually each day gave me the opportunity to really impact the needs of the students. Knowing that we would have virtual class each day gave the students some consistency in their day when so many changes were occurring around them. My students knew each day their teachers would be available for them delivering content to challenge them. Learning continued despite the unique delivery format.
What is a memorable experience you’ve had while teaching? Teaching has provided many memorable experiences. I always tell my students, “I don’t teach content from a book, I teach content from my heart.” This past school year, a “anonymous student” left a charm on my desk which said, “The best teachers teach from the heart not from a book.” To this day, I don’t know who gave me that charm, but it gave me reassurance that I may not be changing the world, but hopefully I am making changes in a number of students who will collectively change the world.
How have you maneuvered online classes and distance learning? I am fortunate that I teach at a school in which each student has a Chromebook and the students are familiar using a Learning Management System. My students were prepared with the necessary technology skills to adapt to the online classes and distance learning. However, students were not prepared to be learning from home for the entire last quarter. In preparation for the upcoming school year, I have invested time in online workshops and professional development to improve my courses and curriculum. I continue to maneuver my courses and curriculum in a manner that can best benefit my students and their learning needs.
How can families adapt to be successful during these challenging educational times? Families can adapt to be successful during these challenging educational times by being supportive. Families need to support one another and support the school. School administration, support staff and teachers are working towards safe plans in which everyone can benefit. Families need to support these plans as best they can. No one has a plan that is guaranteed to be 100% successful; and yet every school in the area is making the best plan they can with the information they are given. Everyone wants what’s best for their stake holders and families can support one another the best they can. In return, every school is working toward supporting their students. (And of course, everyone should keep washing their hands!)
The Dayton Daily News is featuring area educators who are preparing the next generation. For the latest Back to School news and the impact from COVID-19, visit daytondailynews.com/back-to-school