I don’t think any one person could have prepared me for how different my senior year was going to be compared to my first three years of high school. Aside from the confidence and maturity that comes with being a senior, opportunities present themselves as well.
Throughout high school Journalism has always been my calling and still is, but working with kids was something I also love. When I heard of the Teaching Careers program at Four Rivers, I knew it was something I would be interested in.
Now that I am enrolled in this class, I can really see just how beneficial this class is to anyone considering teaching. You learn so much about yourself and get a chance to access your strengths and apply them to being an effective teacher.
You also learn about student development, which not only helps you prepare for having students to teach, but it also sheds light on your peers and makes you rethink what being a student really is.
Then comes the best part, you get to work with kids. I currently get to assist in teaching elementary students two days a week. The amount we get to teach only increases as the year does. By the end of the year, we will only be at Four Rivers one day a week.
Many collegiate teaching programs don't allow students any classroom experience until you have a degree of some sort, but we get hands-on experience almost everyday in high school!
When I am in front of the classroom, I am referred to by the students as “Ms. Osia” and my supervising teacher really makes me feel like I’m just one of the teachers by letting me be a part of the “behind the scenes” things that go into being a teacher. It’s very eye-opening.
Even if you don’t want to pursue teaching (I’m not 100% decided either, so don’t worry), this class helps develop many other skills: public speaking, hands-on work, collaboration with other teacher cadets, organization, leadership, professionalism, and more! I could go on forever.
One of our first big projects was coming up with a “Five Year Plan” after high school. Even if teaching isn’t what you have decided to major in, Teacher Careers teacher Ms. Meers, will help you figure out programs, colleges and career paths that are personalized to you. It always feels good to be in a class that wants to see you succeed.
You also get to do a lot of projects to better the community, like festivals, parades, and many more events that give you really great experience with people.
Overall, it’s just a lot of fun. One of my favorite projects was designing how we want our classroom to look and making classroom guidelines. I really got an opportunity to be creative and rethink how a classroom had to look and I was proud of what I came up with. Also, in creating classroom guidelines, I got a glimpse of what it's like to be the teacher I always wanted.
Outside of projects, we get a lot of time to relax from the usual high school stresses because the class is so different. We just finished reading the Freedom Writer’s Diary and got to have a movie and food day because of it. It was really nice to have a “day off” in a sense, especially with first quarter coming to an end. However, it wasn't really a "day off" when I think about it. It was a time that learning was fun for me.
If you are interested in teaching at all or any of the opportunities listed above, I definitely think this program could be the one for you.