As part of the introductory course requirements, I have asked many of my pre-service teachers to reflect on why it is that they want to teach or why they have chosen to teach? After reading so many great reflections, thoughts and writings, I felt that it was time that I revisited my roots as to why I began teaching so many years ago (nine to be exact… I know, an eternity).
I love school. I still love school. And I think that comes from my love of learning. I cannot tell you where this love of learning comes from – my mothers inquisitive nature, my grandfathers amazing knowledge and understanding of how things work, or my teachers and their passion for their subject. What I can tell you is that in the 8th grade, my science teacher, Mr. Sikora, made me love science. For me, that was a turning point in the first step towards teaching. I began to dig deeper into the sciences, asking more questions about more topics and more ideas. This carried into high school where a few more of my great teachers continued to excite and inspire me with more questions. And not just about science – about reading, writing, thinking, knowing and collaborating. I think that by the time 11th grade hit, I was set on teaching.
My love for learning has not stopped, I can promise that. In such a few short weeks in my new position, I have learned so much from not only so many incredible and truly amazing colleagues, but the reflective process and the questioning with the students has been incredible. I knew coming in that this was an amazing growth opportunity – I just don’t think that I thought I would see how big this opportunity was so soon in the school year.
The decision to teach was never really a question for me – I wanted to work with kids to help them gain perspective, knowledge and understanding about the world around them and to ask critical questions. I wanted to, and continue to want to, help them to grow. However, I can honestly say that I do not think that I ever would have ventured to guess about how much it teaching would change me and how much I would grow personally and professionally.