This course has reaffirmed my desire to become a teacher. I currently work in an office, and although I am good at what I do, I can’t envision myself working in an office for the rest of my life. Teaching on the other hand is far from being routine. Being a teacher requires true dedication, and a drive that always inspires you to be and do better. This course has taught me that a teacher’s goal of reaching his/her students and supporting them in achieving academic success will always be challenged by the students’ surroundings. Not only do teachers have to deal with the effects of a student’s personal life, but in many urban communities teachers must also face insufficient funding, poor teaching conditions, and an undeniable lack of hope. If teaching wasn’t my passion, a course like this, which exposes the reality of teaching in urban communities, may have intimidated me back into my cubicle. Instead this course has strengthened my aspirations of becoming a teacher and of having a positive impact on each of my students’ lives.
One of the most valuable lessons that this course has taught me about public education is that it is fundamentally important to be creative. Because not all schools have the funding necessary to provide all students across the country with an equal level of opportunities, for example through course text books or school extracurricular activities, teachers must find alternative ways in which to engage their students’ interest and promote their learning. A teacher’s resourcefulness can potentially turn 99¢ sales into supply closets and bake sales into fundraisers. On the educationally end, sport statistics can be transformed into math lessons, music into literary analysis, and board games can be modified to serve as practice sessions for exams. Utilizing everyday items and situations do not only serve as teaching aids, but also impart the lessons of not conforming to tough circumstances and of making the best of what’s available. The focus must always be in preparing the students to succeed, and despite material and monetary disadvantages, these life lessons are what they will carry with them through the years.
Teaching is a powerful and fulfilling profession. Being a teacher doesn’t just consist of teaching a subject matter and striving to produce a class full of “A” students. Becoming a teacher means assuming the great responsibility of really understanding your students and taking on the challenges that may prevent them from achieving to the fullest of their potential. This course has inspired me personally and professionally to see beyond any obstacles and to always keep my eyes set on my goals. As a teacher I will aim to motivate my students to set high standards for themselves, and I will support them in living up to these standards. The impact a teacher can have on a student can be life altering. As a teacher I will be committed to seeing that my students receive the best education they can, regardless of the community they live in or any form of impediment that challenges their chances of success. I will also provide the emotional support they need to believe and know that they can reach beyond any limitations they have been dealt. This course has reinforced my determination to become a teacher, and to make a difference in each of my students’ lives.