I always remember sitting in my classes the first day of class, and observing the type of decorating and arrangement of the classroom my teachers had done, but especially thinking of all the different things I would have done if it were my classroom. The most vivid time I recall doing this is my first day of 8th grade, and I think that was when I was at an age were I finally realized “Hey, being a teacher seems like it would be a fun career choice!” Luckily, that thought was true, but it’s also a lot of work, but rewarding work. In high school I had many amazing teachers, but especially my math teachers. I remember geometry class my sophomore year as the year I decided I wanted to be a high school math teacher. I realized this because in our classes we could contract for different levels of classes, and each level had varying expectations of you, I always went for the middle level because I knew I was good at math, but I never saw my self as an exceptional student in any subject area. I was smart, but none of it came super easy to me, so I never wanted to stress myself out by contracting for the hardest levels. My geometry teacher quickly realized that I should have contracted for the higher level because I sat there in class bored because I would be flying through that night’s homework while she was still teaching that material. Because she actually took notice of this, and cared enough to encourage me to change my level and challenge myself more I discovered that having a good math teacher, who cares about your learning is really important.
Knowing my major prior to college certainly made choosing Fontbonne easy, because they have a great Education department. Fall semester of my sophomore year here at Fontbonne I had a class where we had to observe in a school for the first time. Because they generally lump middle school and secondary education majors together (There are not as many of us as there are elementary, early , or special education) I was placed in a middle school just because of space in the high school math classes. I am very grateful I was because I found out how fun middle school students can be, and they are still eager and willing to learn. This is the reason I switched from Secondary Education to Middle School Education, but I am still planning to be a math teacher and I am very happy with my choices to this day.
This is a very hectic semester for me! I have to observe for a total of 80 hours in middle schools this semester, 30 for one class and 50 for another. I am also taking two online classes, which I am not the biggest fan of online classes, but I couldn’t avoid them! I have already had two group projects. So, I’ve basically been busy non-stop basically all my school work, meeting up with groups, observing and working. It’s been… interesting. Can’t complain too much because I have loved every minute spent in those classrooms this semester, which makes me much more confident about my decision to become a Middle school teacher, and excited for the day I have my own class and classroom!
Staying on top of all that needs to be done is the hard part. I have all of my course calendars pinned on the wall that my desk is up against so that I can constantly see the due dates of assignments, and check them off as I go. I hope that these observations continue to be as enjoyable as they have been, and that by the end all my effort shows for these classes. Fingers crossed!
Sometimes it is really shocking which classes end up being your favorites. Mine would have to be two that I expected the be the most work, which they were, but they were also the most rewarding courses I have taken so far during my time here at Fontbonne. I have three favorite classes. All of them have been education classes, so I am fairly confidant I have chosen the right major – at least I hope since I am almost halfway through my junior year…
The first class that is one of my favorites is the one that actually led me to change my major. I started off as a Math major, with a certificate in Secondary Education, but when I took my practicum class (which all education majors have to pass in order to get major approval) because they put middle school and secondary education majors together in the same class, I was actually placed in a middle school for observation hours and I realized that I loved every minute of it! Middle schoolers are a handful, but a fun handful! If it weren’t for this class, I may not have realized that I liked middle school so much, and would not have become a Middle School Education major.
My second favorite class is one I am currently in: Middle School Philosophy. It is taught by Brentwood Middle School’s former principal, who just retired at the end of last school year. Because she was just so recently in the middle school level all of her knowledge is so real life, and true! It’s an amazing class because she makes it so fun, plus it is so small because there are so few middle school majors and it reminds all of us why we chose this level and are so passionate about it!
My final favorite is just because it is so much fun! It is a class I am taking as an elective because I need more credit hours, and it is designed for early education majors, but I love it so much! It is called Multi-Sensory Methods and it is all about integrating arts into your lesson plans. A lot of people call it “arts &crafts time” but you really do learn a lot of great ideas for your future lesson plans, and you have a lot of fun while learning also!
I really love Fontbonne’s Education program! We have really passionate, amazing teachers who are truly dedicated to helping their students become exceptional teachers.