I want to leave the world better than how I found it. I believe in commitment, follow-through, persistence, PASSION, and fighting for people and causes that move me. As a teacher, I will fight for my students, pushing them to be the best that they can be, encouraging them when they’re consumed by fear of failure, and having their backs in whatever arena we find ourselves facing. My classroom is a haven for students to rest from the troubles of their lives; and environment to EXPLORE, to find what moves them and how to express their diverse voices on these matters. Together we will learn to explore, CHALLENGE, and change our world.
Teaching is not a career one endeavors to pursue for a monetary reward. It’s not a life-choice you make because it seems like a convenient, stable job. Rather, making the choice to become an educator is a decision that becomes integral to the nature and identity of the teacher.
If I’m being honest here, I’m terrified of getting certified and being in charge of my own classroom; frankly I think most of us are. We’re responsible for shaping the minds of the future: pushing them, nurturing them, and introducing them to things they never thought possible. This is not a responsibility to be taken lightly, although it’s unfortunate that so many teachers do. However, there is that handful of teachers that stick out, cemented into our memories as a driving force that helped shape us to be the people we are today. These teachers strove for the greatness of their students. “Give up” is not in their vocabulary. Passion is the name of their game, and their passion is for their students and their world.
When I think about what kind of teacher I want to be, I’m drawn back to these few people who helped me become the woman I am today. They taught me persistence, how to fight, to push myself harder than I knew I could, and to overcome the obstacles put in my path. These teachers taught me the meaning of patience, that sometimes the best thing you can do is to stop and take care of yourself; perfection is boring. These are the people I look back to when I’m doubting myself… I remember everything they taught me, the lessons I never would have gained if it hadn’t been for their guidance and support. In these moments I remember why I chose this path, and why it’s important that I stick with it. Not all of these kids will have advocates in the home or in their social lives, I certainly didn’t.
In creating my art room, I have the opportunity to be an advocate. My students will have a space where they can feel safe, engaging with content that moves, inspires, and challenges them. I don’t imagine my class will be easy for my students, nor do I really want it to be. The art classroom should be a place of growth, discovery, expression, and these things do not come easily. However, they’re certainly an endeavor worth experiencing, and I for one cannot wait to see where my students take me.