Monday, January 14, 2008

Why did I become a Teacher?

After my last post, I've been thinking about my journey as a teacher. I find that when I meet someone new, they ask me what I do, and then subsequently how did I get there. I guess I always was a teacher, I just never realized it.

Growing up I had always been the babysitter for the neighborhood. My little brother is 8 years my junior and I was a built-in babysitter for my parents, and it just expanded. I ended up being a Basketball coach, a Baseball Coach, a Soccer Coach and a Den Sister at the age 0f 16. I loved working with the 1st graders, when sport is just so much fun! Then, as part of my high school community service I taught Sunday School for 2 years. Yet, I still couldn't see that I was a teacher or that I had a knack for it - I just enjoyed it.

Then when college came (see previous post for engineering reference)I still couldn't see it - until I started teaching E115, an undergraduate run 1 hour Intro to the computing system at State. I loved teaching that class, and thought - maybe this is what I should do.

Then, my Dad gave me a book called, "Please Understand Me," Which I now know is basically an interpretation of Myers Briggs, and discovered that my "Personality Type" was pre-disposed to like teaching. So I investigated a bit more and found the College of Education at NC State (my current employer - but more on that later).

It was there that I found how to cultivate what I was doing unconsciously, into what I would like to consider a worthwhile career. But I didn't take the traditional road - Heck - I'm still not on it.

When it comes down to it there are 2 reason's I'm a teacher 1)I found a great place to start and get excited about education & 2)I had the opportunity to work with students and enjoyed it so much - I wanted to see that "A-ha" moment on their faces. I wanted them to get it. No matter how young or old my students are, that is what drives me. To help someone else understand a concept, and most of the time teach me a new way to think about it in the process. It is not about imparting knowledge, for me it is about understanding and interpreting it.

Ok - so obviously expository writing is not my forte - more nuts and blots posts to follow :)

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