About Teacher Cadets

  • This blog was created for a student in a high school who is participating in the Teacher Cadet Program.

    The primary goal of the Teacher Cadet Program is to encourage students to consider teaching as a career. A secondary goal is to provide these students insights about teachers and schools so that they will be civic advocates of education.

    This blog was created for the student to share learning, insights, questions, and experiences they gain as they participate in the program. Links to other classroom participants are included.

    The class blog is located at: Teacher Cadets

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Hi Nicole,

I would agree with you that students are the best part about teaching! I’ve sure been fortunate to have been around some wonderful students in the many years I taught! There have been students I remember for the incredible projects they completed and there are those I remember for relationships that developed because they needed someone to talk to.

I’ll be having coffee with one former student soon. She’s graduated from college, married with two children (her daughter’s name is Elizabeth Lani, what an honor to me). As a senior, she had a serious drinking and drug problem. One day, after lots of talks and my encouraging her to go to a group, I said to her I wasn’t going to cry at her funeral. I told her I couldn’t speak to her until she took control of her life. And after she left the room, I cried. For months, we would pass each other in the hall, and our eyes would meet and I could tell she was still drinking. She was the valedictorian of the class. Later in the summer, she emailed me; she finally tried AA and asked to make amends, which were to me unnecessary. We celebrate each July 14, her years of sobriety.

So when you wrote about teachers being role models, almost parents, that really got me to thinking. I had wondered if students really saw it that way. I always felt I had a responsibility to be a role model for students but I am not sure I knew how much it meant to them, at least not at the time. Now that I think back, those relationships, (I described only one and all do not have happy endings), were one of the most special things about being a teacher. The opportunity to touch another soul— it’s a part of teaching that isn’t often talked about in these days of testing and standards-- I think that’s too bad. I wish the author of your article had talked about some of his students so you could get an even better sense of how much students are the best part about teaching.

I wonder, if a person doesn’t think that’s true, do you think they are in the right profession? Do you think people who don’t feel that way should plan to teach?


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March 2006

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