I am a 5th grade classroom teacher and a freelance writer. Teaching and writing are my passions! My husband is the pastor of our church. We have two teenagers, Aaron and Amber. Two dogs and four cats are also members of our family.
|EDUCATION: B.S. Elementary and Middle School Education from Bluefield State College||BLOG: To Live is Christ|
|CERTIFICATIONS: Elementary and Middle School Education||CURRICULUM VITAE: Must be logged in to view|
The job of classroom teaching has its rewards. The "I've got this" facial expression that the students get when they grasp a new concept is one reward. Being able to show love to children who have no one to love them is a privilege to me. Having a rapport with the parents and guardians in my community is a plus.
Realistically, the teaching profession is West Virginia has its challenges. While being pressured to produce excellent test scores, some of the students have no desire to learn because they are hungry, or, perhaps they had no sleep the previous night due to lack of stability in the home. Whatever the case may be, student learning will not take place until their most basic needs are met. It is a juggling act to balance classroom teaching, classroom management, and acceptable test scores while some students have such desperate needs.
Despite the challenges, teaching is my heart and soul. In order to teach an average of twenty students in my classroom, I do have to run a tight ship so to speak. Routine is essential, yet, I know I must maintain flexibility.
No matter what type of day I am having, I still smile when a student says, "I love you, Mrs. Mitchell." Moments like these remind me of the reason I decided to become an educator in the first place. A teacher in West Virginia is certainly not in the profession for the income. We are in it for the outcome. Watching students overcome their own personal challenges and perform well academically is an especially desired outcome. When a student has struggled for the first three months of the school term, then, begins showing improvement, a desired outcome has been achieved.
Although it is impossible to reach every child or make every child completely successful, I know that I must not give up. I have to keep plodding on, and I have to continue motivating myself and fellow teachers. Many children are counting on us. We cannot afford to let them down.
Teaching in West Virginia is a low paying profession. Although we have sought legislation changes from our state government, West Virginia teachers are some of the lowest paid in the nation. Did anyone ever stop to think that we make all other professions possible?
I am not seeking sympathy, but, perhaps, I am appealing to empathy. The monetary pay is nothing to be desired, especially due to the pressures that are placed on our shoulders by the state administration. However, I cannot walk away from this profession. Too many members of future generations are counting on someone to lead them in the right direction, not just academically, but morally and emotionally.
No, I will not give up. I will keep going. Every day is a new day, a new opportunity to make life more pleasant for struggling children. Every day, I wake up and have the burning desire to go to my school, walk in my classroom, greet the students, and guide them to be the change they wish to see in their world.