Melissa A teacher for Learn It in Chicago

“This job is certainly stretching and growing me as an educator.”

What’s the best thing about your job?

The best thing about my job is the ability to give all of my focus and energy to a small group of students – students who might not be experiencing great amounts of success in the larger classroom dynamic.  I am able to address their individual needs and help them feel successful in the academic tasks at hand.  I am able to help build their confidence and basic foundational skills which often translate into stronger overall school performance.

What is the most interesting part of your job?

The most interesting part of my job is being able to interact with such a wide range of age levels – from 5 to 14.  Each age group allows me the opportunity to use a different part of my personality and helps me approach the concepts of reading and math in a variety of ways.  With the majority of my previous teaching experience being in middle school math, this job is certainly stretching and growing me as an educator.

What is the most interesting part of your job?

The most challenging aspects of my job are trying to ensure that the students that get pulled out of their usual daily schedule to work with me do not feel stigmatized or labeled in any way; that they don’t feel they are any less capable or have any less potential then their peers.

What advice would you offer potential candidates in your field?

Be a continuous learner.  It is important to be actively learning about and trying new teaching strategies, especially when you are working with varied ages. Be reflective – it is important to take intentional time to process and consider how you can improve from one day to the next.  Be open to communicating and collaborating regularly with classroom teachers to build a professional relationship that will ultimately help students succeed.

If you could sum up working for Learn It in three words what would they be?

Challenging.  Rewarding.  Structured.