Tuesday, July 16, 2013
Why I became a teacher
I have known over 1/2 my life that I am supposed to be a teacher. I figured this out when I was 16 years old and I have never looked back since. In fact, in most of my interviews for teaching positions I share my "WHY" with the interviewing panel. As a freshman and sophomore in High School I was involved in pretty much everything. I was captain of the volleyball team, played on the basketball, golf and even track team. I was a JV cheerleader, on the math team, involved in DECA and even student council. And of course, I was 1st chair in Band and was overwhelmingly involved in music and band in my life. Through all of these sporting teams and events, I noticed that the teachers/ coaches were committed to winning and not so much the kid themselves. Now don't get me wrong, I had some AMAZING coaches and teachers while in Junior High and High School but the passion for STUDENTS was not always there.
I had my "AHA" moment when I was a freshman in High School on the volleyball team having practice after school. We had our usual 2 hour practice after school hours and all of us went to the locker room and changed and freshened up while we waited for our rides, our parents since we were only 14-15 years old, to show up. After the short time in the locker room, we all came out to see our coach driving away with her hair down in her convertible waving as she passed by. The light bulb turned on and I was like "Wow, really? My dad isn't even here yet... cant you wait just a few minutes?" Unfortunately, this became a common thing. A
s I realized this I began to look around at my other teachers and mentors. My band directors, Mr. Standridge and Mr. Cook, both stayed late all the time to help us learn our marching show music or our All-Region Band audition material or whatever the case may be. I had never really thought about it but they were constantly trying to help ME and not just the team or their own winning record. I remember one time I was practicing with Mr. Standridge for All-State band and lost track of the time. My dad had come into the band hall after waiting 15 minutes in his car and said "Kellie, your mom is already home from work and we have dinner waiting at home. Its 5:30!" The amazing thing was Mr. Standridge didn't get upset or anything, instead his response was "Cool, we got an awesome practice in today. We can do it again tomorrow." He then told my dad to make dinner a little later the rest of the week. Mr. Standridge had a family of his own at home and so did Mr. Cook, who was doing the same thing with a brass student at the time and also stayed well past 6 pm each night as well. It was then that I decided that if these teachers cared that much about me and my personal growth and development, that I need to give them 100%. It was after this moment that I decided to "Choose a Lane" as the saying goes and from that point on I was all BAND all the time! This scenario LITERALLY changed my life and I would not be where I am today if it weren't for this realization.
You see, teaching is all about the PASSION and sometimes we need a refresher and check of ourselves to be sure we have the PASSION for our students and not just OURSELVES or OUR CLASSROOM as a whole (IE... TEST SCORES). This summer has been a great "REFRESHER" for me and this area of my teaching career. I cannot wait to go to my new school and show my new students this passion.
Thank You, Lord for allowing me to be a teacher and show COMPASSION for my students and THEIR success! I pray you will help me be COMPASSIONATE about my students EACH AND EVERY DAY!
God is good... ALL the time!