If a young person told me they wanted to become a teacher I would...
encourage them to follow their dreams.
This is the same advice I give to any young person sharing their life vision with me. We need young educators that have drive and determination in our schools. I do not want to deter anyone that wants to make learning better for our children. Teaching is exciting, rewarding, and perfect for those that love learning and growing. It feeds my curiosity and my need to serve and help others. I have written in this blog how much I wished I had a better middle school experience--it's my mission to make those years better for the students in my care than it was for me.
I think back to the reactions I received when I told people I was going to be a teacher with a History major and a German minor. Some would wholeheartedly support my German degree and tell me I'd easily find a teaching job. They would then explain that History teachers were a dime a dozen and to find another major. Quickly. Perhaps not surprisingly I had approximately equal numbers of people encourage my History degree because it was marketable but tell me I'd never have a career teaching German!
I quickly began to listen to myself more and others less.
I knew how much teaching meant to me and that things would work out. (I guess my stubborn streak helped, too!) I was willing to be as resourceful as possible in order to make my dream a reality. When young people come to me wanting to be a teacher I encourage them to listen to their heart and work hard. I reiterate the need to find a way to stand out and prove how serious they are about their commitment. I have also offered to be a sounding board for the student teachers and new teachers that I meet. A strong work ethic is a key to making a dream a reality and I'm grateful that it worked for me. #reflectiveteacher