Monday, June 24, 2013

Natalie, Part 3: Making a Difference

Hey Momsters!  I am so behind on my posts, but it's ok, because I've been having fun getting ready for our Sweetie Pie's 1st Birthday party which was this past Saturday!  We had so much fun!  Stay tuned, because I'll be sharing pictures and projects from the party. 
 
I've been highlighting Natalie as my MOM for June and she is sharing her story of returning to college with three young children (Click here for Part 1 and Part 2).  Since she started school in 2009, Natalie has learned a lot about herself, her worldviews, and how she was never quite as open-minded as she once proclaimed.  She honestly explains:
"Being in the ELL endorsement [program], and living in an area with a large number of immigrants (mostly Mexican) I have become so much more aware of the sterrotypes and prejudices people foster towards others.  It makes me sad to think how ignorant people can be and that I was once a part of that."
Natalie was not happy when they moved to their current town, and she knew that their oldest son would be going to school there. However, her views have completely changed now that she has learned more about the schools and the curriculum, and has worked inside the schools as a practicum student.  Natalie is now encouraged, and determined to become an amazingly supportive teacher because "These students face so many challenges, and are often the students who are at the highest risk of failure and dropout, but all they need is the right support and motivation."  
 
Natalie graduates in just under on year in May 2014, and she will have her BA in Education with an ELL endorsement (which means she took specific classes to learn how to best teach English Language Learners).  She is hoping to teach the third grade within a large ELL population, as they tend to face the biggest hurdles when it comes to academic success. Although she would like to continue to brush up on her Spanish, and is interested in working with native Spanish speakers, she will have the tools to work with all English Language Learners, regardless of their native language. 
 
What helped Natalie push forward when the journey seemed too difficult? 
"This has been a long and difficult journey, and there have been plenty of times I wanted to give up, but knowing that I could really make a difference in a student's life, that I could be that teacher that had a positive impact keeps me going.  It is a great responsibility, and one that I don't take lightly. Being a parent also helped me see the role of the teacher in a new light - I know that I want to be the kind of teacher I want my own kids to have.  It won't be easy, but keeping it in that perspective will help make it more attainable."
Natalie and I at my graduation.  We get to do this again next year!
Natalie, you are an amazing Momster and you are going to make a fabulous teacher!  I am so proud of your hard work and sacrifice, and am so happy for you to be nearing the end of your journey...you're almost done!  Thank you for sharing your story.  I hope that another Momster reading this may be inspired to step outside her comfort zone and take a risk in order to make a dream come true. 

"With great risk comes great reward"
or is it...
 "With great power comes great responsibility"...?
:)
 
Either way, you'll be grrrreat!
 
 

1 comment:

  1. Thanks, sister! You did such a great job writing this up. I am honored to be a part of your blog and am excited to see what you have in store next month!

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