During her 1996 Nobel Prize for Literature Lecture, Wislawa Szymborska said, “There is, has been, and will always be a certain group of people whom inspiration visits. It’s made up of all those who’ve consciously chosen their calling and do their job with love and imagination... Their work becomes one continuous adventure as long as they manage to keep discovering new challenges in it.” In the same way, I feel beyond blessed to have established myself in a profession where I love what I do. Teaching entails more than a job to me as it is where my work and passion come together. Therefore, I hope to teach for as long as I have the strength to do so.
When I meet a group of strangers on the first day of school, and through the course of the year see us all grow into a cohesive and safe community, I feel exhilarated. I enjoy watching my students leave my room “on a high” for the rest of the day. I love overhearing students discussing my lesson in the hallway, as I walk to my next class. When my students tell me they have decided to pursue a career in science as a result of my lessons, I feel thrilled. I believe that every student can achieve his or her potential through positive support and encouragement. I memorize my students’ names before the first day of school, and am sensitive to their particular needs. Through listening to their personal experiences and stories, I easily connect and grow to love my students.
I strive to develop my students’ intellectual curiosity and analytical reasoning by constantly raising the bar. For example, I provide assignments that further explain and connect previous lessons or class discussions. To ensure the success of each student I make sure to be available before and after class. I have high standards that are met through one on one conferencing, lab reports, draft papers, revisions, and reflections. I engage my students in a variety of ways, each class and lesson being different in order to enable them to draw their own connections.
Combining various methods such as visual diagrams, flow charts, role-playing, demos, mini experiments, or labs, helps students remain connected with course topics and material. For example, when teaching Genetics, I demonstrate how our chromosomes acquire genetic material through “crossing over”, by having students literally empty out their pockets and hand over whatever they have to their partner. This activity enables them to quickly understand and remember the chromosomal exchange of parts that occurs.
Over the years I strive to keep my lessons fresh and effective. I take great pride in my intellectual creativity and feel a wonderful sense of accomplishment upon providing a thoughtful, well-prepared lesson. Each class has a particular purpose that has been previously thought out and carefully organized. After every lesson, I consider ways to further improve and perfect my teaching skills. I keep my classes guessing and excited about what each lesson involves.
Remaining flexible, and open to new ideas, opinions, and feedback allows me to improve and expand my methodology. It has taken years of fine-tuning and effort to get it right, but I feel proud of my achievements. Personally, there is no greater joy then seeing my students’ hands fly up during a lesson, or students jumping out of their seats with excitement when they have an idea they would like to share. When I read my students end of year evaluations, I feel rewarded in a way that’s difficult to put into words. I am passionate about my profession, as it is one where I constantly have new audiences to motivate and inspire. Being a positive role model, leader, and dedicated teacher is how I successfully encourage my students to learn and make an impact.
Courses for the 2017- 2018 School Year:
Biology Help Available:
Time / Place
7:30-8:00 am Monday – Friday @ Room 420 or by appointment