Key Times in my Learning Career

I had many people in my life, both teachers and non-educators, who shaped the way I learned. They caused me to love a subject even more than I already did, force myself to become self-sufficient in a subject, or know that I and other students deserved better.

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Photo CC by Chiot’s Run

My first person shaped my love for art. When I was in fourth grade, a woman named Priscilla came into my class a few weeks before Christmas break. She brought in little ceramic bear ornaments for us to paint. She took these back to her shop, fired them, and brought them back to our class. I was home sick the day that Priscilla brought the ornaments back, and someone took my ornament. I was sent home with the wrong ornament, and, to a nine year old, that was the end of the world. My parents took me to her shop to paint a new ornament. In doing that, my mom and I discovered a love for painting pottery. Over the next few years, Priscilla helped me develop my talent by teaching me new techniques. She was a key person in my decision to become an art major.

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Photo CC by Angus Mcdiarmid

Another person who caused me to choose an art major was my high school art teacher. She was not influential in a good way at all. Her method of teaching was to yell at the class, give an assignment, and then yell some more. I powered through her classes because I loved art so much, but I knew I deserved better. It made me realize that I wanted to become a teacher to give younger generations the chance to have a more positive experience than I had. However, she did teach me to persevere no matter how much I hate the situation I’m in.

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Photo CC by Sean Macentee

One of my math teachers in high school was absolutely horrible. I almost failed the class and fell far behind because of his lack of ability and drive to put in any extra effort. The only thing I took away from the class was self-sufficiency. I was forced to teach myself the best I could to at least pass the class.

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Photo CC by Marco Nedermeijer

Another math teacher of mine was the polar opposite. She took the time to work with each students individually if she had to in order to ensure everyone got as much out of the class as they could. I took away a sense of self-confidence from that class. I might not have had A’s in the class, but she helped me keep up the best grades I could and be able to work through the math problems I was given.  She was very patient and showed true care and love for her students.

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Photo CC by Jesse Kruger

My middle school music teacher taught me so much. He taught me to know I could always be doing better and taught me the drive to achieve a higher level of performance. He was an amazing teacher that, even in high school, would still let us schedule private lessons so  that we could get better. He taught me to have patience with myself, but to never settle for less than what I knew I was capable of.

Each of these people had an impact on my learning career. I may have not liked some of them, but I took away at least one positive thing from each of these people.

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4 thoughts on “Key Times in my Learning Career

  1. I think that it is great how you started to like pottery. Also to have that many people inspire you while you are in school that is pretty great. I liked your blog. Also when reading the one you talked about your ornament from that lady that came into your classroom that was nice of her to let you paint a new one at her shop. Great job.

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  2. We can learn so much about who we want to be as teachers from reflecting on the teachers who had the greatest impact on us. You’ve learned some amazing lessons about good teaching and the positive effect we can have on students’ lives.

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    1. Throughout all of my school years, I have been able to look at every teacher I’ve had and thought either “I want to be a teacher like you,” or “There is no way I will ever turn out like you.” I used to feel horrible about doing it, but now that I’m going into teaching I have discovered the value of studying my teachers habits, both good and bad. Now I know what behaviors to emulate and which ones to avoid like the plague!

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