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[Educator Network] Reflecting on the Influential Educators to Honor for Educator Appreciation

[Educator Network] Reflecting on the Influential Educators to Honor for Educator Appreciation

“Teachers help tiny seeds grow into mighty trees.”

Throughout my childhood, my teachers, schools, and friends became family, as I moved around a lot and found solace, confidence, and happiness in learning and the structure of the school day. The list of educators who were most influential throughout these years are too many to name, but I will share those that I believe were the driving force behind my career choice in education. I encourage us all to reflect on the people, classroom educators, mentors and all who have crossed our paths in life with a passion to share and impart knowledge. Be thankful for the gifts they have shared with you.

Mrs. Morgan

In fourth grade, I had a fabulous teacher named Mrs. Morgan, who enveloped my shyness with kindness and helped me to make friends and feel accepted in our advanced ELA class. This was my first year at this school after moving several times between Kindergarten and 4th grade, and some of the friends that I made in Mrs. Morgan’s class I still have to this day. Her influence on my career was to show kindness in all situations and to be that safe space for a student to feel appreciated, heard, seen, and loved.

Mr. Audirsch and Mrs. Westley

Mr. Audirsch, my 7th and 8th grade science teacher, and Mrs. Westley, my History teacher for the same years, taught me the importance of perseverance and not accepting anything other than my personal best, which they pushed me to see was much more than I was giving. They were tough teachers, and I learned content as well as life-lessons in these classes. Their influence on my career was to push students to realize their potential and to be that guiding force in searching for one’s personal best self.

Ms. Pierce

Ms. Pierce, my 10th and 11th grade Algebra and Trigonometry teacher, taught me so much higher content math but also the beauty in number and math problems, the connections between figuring out complex math problems and having heightened sense of self-efficacy, as well as helping others to succeed. Her influence on my career was this: to teach complex material to all students, you have to start where they are, support their learning throughout, and build a bridge to tough ideas and concepts through discussion, practice, and with a lot of kindness and patience.

Mr. Trosclair

Mr. Trosclair was my band director from 5th to 8th grade, and he is the one of the most influential people to my development as an educator. He was always passionate about teaching music, and his love for the subject matter as well as his students was evident every single day of the four years I was in his band class. He also made me strive for personal greatness, and he would not let me settle for less than my very best. Playing flute in middle school under his direction is one of the most influential experiences I had growing up. His band was a team, and he was the coach. He encouraged us all to support each other, to never give up, to practice hard, and to celebrate our hard work. This was the first team I was a part of, and it influenced my education career by creating, in me, a team player, in any situation, with whatever struggles or challenges that arise.

Who are your influencers? Who made an impact on your professional life? During this month of Teacher Appreciation, let them know. Let important people know they had impact. It is easy to do with Edmentum’s downloadable Gratitude Cards!