Teachers for Tomorrow

Changing Lives, One at a Time

Jonathan Rogers teaches a fraction lesson to a kindergarten class at JBWES.

Kate Muehlbauer, Page Editor

Over the course of the year, Mrs. Jackie Tully’s Teachers for Tomorrow Service Learning class has occasionally adopted the role of a teacher in an elementary school or middle school classroom, teaching concepts like counting, reading, and making crafts with their respective classes at their designated schools, J.B. Watkins Elementary School, Swift Creek Elementary School, Midlothian Middle School, and Tomahawk Creek Middle School. Last year, students went to elementary school during the first semester, then switched to middle school for the second. However, this year, students had the ability to choose which one they wanted to attend for the first semester.  Many elected to go to elementary school, but a few did choose to attend middle school instead.

Payton Vernier, a first-year Teacher for Tomorrow and a senior at Midlothian High School, works with a kindergarten class at J.B. Watkins Elementary School. She describes her experience with her mentor teacher and students as a great opportunity to see what it is like to work as a teacher. From her time with the kindergarten class, she has had the ability to run classroom activities and work with students one-on-one howneed some extra assistance. Payton explains, ¨I love going outside to recess with the kids. They love to play, and it’s so fun watching their imagination run wild, and I love being able to experience that with them.¨ When asked if she would want to pursue teaching after taking this course, she enthusiastically responds that she would absolutely love to spend her future interacting and teaching children.

Senior Schuyler Hicks, a first-year Service Learning student, also attends J.B. Watkins Elementary School; however, she works with a first grade class. During her time with the students, Schuyler has helped with reading and writing stations, as well as assisting any students who might need it. Not only has she worked with the students in an academic setting, Schuyler also had the chance to help with a run the students participated in that served as a fundraiser for the school,  and she describes the Apex Fun Run as her favorite experience yet. She remarked, ¨I had so much fun doing this because I was able to see the children so happy and excited.¨ From these experiences, she says, ¨I have learned new and creative ways to keep children entertained and how to be an authority figure.¨ Before she took the class, Schuyler wanted to be an Exceptional Education teacher; however, now, she feels certain that she will definitely pursue this career and will thoroughly enjoy working with the children every day.

Throughout these experiences, Mrs. Tully’s Service Learning Teachers for Tomorrow class has learned invaluable lessons about what it means to have the roles reversed. After taking this interactive course, many of them now hope to pursue a degree in education.