By Teachers, For Teachers
North Buncombe High School
Weaverville, North Carolina
Now that I've completed my 5th year teaching, I can say that I love it more every year. I love just about everything about the school. As a coach and yearbook adviser, I stay extremely busy at school and I wouldn't have it any other way.
I graduated from Appalachian State University in May 2004 with a BS in Family and Consumer Sciences Secondary Education. I'm not sure if I have any official "accomplishments," although sometimes that "project" student that you a determined to help can turn into a huge accomplishment for a teacher in the end. I've had many of those.
Who was your favorite teacher? Why?
My favorite teacher was probably Mrs. Crowder in middle school. She was my drama teacher and I loved that class. I took it every year. To this day, I am still in touch with Marsha. She is an amazing lady. She taught me so much about how to talk in front of others and be myself. Middle school is such a hard time, and for someone to make you realize that it's ok to be yourself....that's special!
My other favorite teachers would have to be my parents. Although they weren't school teachers, I am so thankful that I had such a wonderful family. They taught me how to treat people, to be thankful for what i have and to never give up. Whenever I think that I can't finish something, I know that my Momma will be there to tell me that she believes in me and that my Daddy will tell me that he's proud of me. My confidence comes from them.
What are three things every teacher should own?
1. An electric pencil sharpener because, let's face it, the ones on the wall never work.
2. A candy dish or a candy drawer. You never know when a piece of candy will help motivate a kid to finish a project or cheer up someone on a bad day.
3. A camera. I LOVE looking back on the projects that my old classes did and I love taking pictures.
If you could have any person (living, dead or fictional) as a principal, who would it be?
Mr. Belding from Saved by the Bell. How cool was that guy?
What profession other than your own would you most like to attempt?
There are so many! I would love to be a flight attendant. It would be so cool to travel all the time and I love being in airports (weird, I know!). I would also love to be a professional wedding photographer. I have taken photos for family, but it would be so neat to be such an important part of a special day for people. I love wedding pictures. There are more, but I'll stop there!
Describe your all-time favorite lesson/unit activity.
I am piloting a new class for North Carolina called Food Technology. The capstone course for the class is to develop a new food product. They have to come up with the recipe, determine the target market, set up taste test panels, develop a HACCP plan for their company, determine packaging and labeling, and advertising. The project is huge. They work in groups and they get so into their project. I get to see them take "ownership" of their project, and it is amazing to watch them get into it!
What is the greatest misconception about teachers?
That we aren't people too. Kids see me at the grocery store and act like I'm a celebrity. It's like they don't know what to say. When you see them at the mall or the movies, they are totally blown away sometimes. I love telling my students silly stories of things I do on the weekend because I want them to know I'm just another person. It just so happens that I have a degree to teach them. (For example, "This weekend, I was making a grilled cheese and my husband said that he would help while I ran to the mailbox, and by the time I got back in the house was filled with smoke. I thought my house was burning down, but it was just a grilled cheese." or "My husband's PS3 quit working this weekend. I mean, most things stop working once they are in a million pieces.")
What stereotype about teachers is true?
Probably that, to an extent, we're all nerds of some kind. We are obsessive compulsive and systematic; even if the system seems crazy to everyone else.
How did you know you wanted to be a teacher?
My major in college wasn't always education, but it was in family and consumer sciences. I realized that I loved the department and all the classes within the department were appealing. If I specialized in something within the department, I wouldn't get to take all the interesting classes.
I had always thought that I could never be a teacher. But I became a teacher because of my love for the subject. My love for my students came once I had a class full of them and realized just how much they could make me laugh.