4 Things Student Teaching Taught Me

In honor of graduating next Saturday (AH!) and having officially finished my Student Teaching portion of my Undergrad, I wanted to share some of the the many things I learned through this clinical experience.

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Here is what I learned while student teaching this year:

1.) Teaching is the MOST selfless thing on this planet.

Honestly. I had the opportunity to work with some stellar teachers, and they work so hard for their students. Not only are they taking care of the day-to-day lessons, but these teachers also go to pep rallies, sporting events, and choir events to support the students. Teaching takes so much planning and after “work hours”… way more than I ever imagined. There are teachers who work so hard, not just so the students know the material, but so that these students can be successful, contributing citizens in the future. Many people see teachers as just educating students in necessary material for college or career paths, but teachers are also filling roles of missing parents, mentors, or just someone to talk to. This is what makes a teacher so selfless; the compassion and unconditional love shown to the students… no matter what.

 

2.) When you have teachable moments, they are awesome.

Sometimes my lessons go exactly as I plan, but usually the lessons turn into a loose interpretation of how I intended them to be. This is mostly because the class I mostly taught was Psychology, so there is wiggle room for discussions and questions from the students. There are so many teachable moments the students brought up with questions about real-life situations that I never could have planned. These were my favorite moments in the classroom.

3.) You will love the kids, all of them.

Yes, even the ones who test you and test you. The ones who you have to repeatedly tell to get off Instagram or shush during a lecture. All of these students are something else, something special. After I finished my student teaching I seriously missed those kids (still do) I want to see each of them grow and succeed. I didn’t think it was possible to come into a class for just a few months and really feel such a compassion for these students, but I learned every student’s name and I genuinely cared about each one.

 

4.) The kids will change you more than you think.

For real. These kiddos changed me so much. This quarter of my undergrad was the most stressful yet, but the students were very understanding and so encouraging. I learned so much from them. I learned how to be compassionate and patient no matter what is happening in my life; because they need me. I learned that kids are always looking for mentors and need them dearly. They make me want to be a better person, and strive to always be compassionate to everyone I meet. They taught me so much… and they can teach us all some of these things.

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Obviously, these are only a few things I learned while Student Teaching… other things were far harder lessons than anticipated. There are some things I regret… like leaving in such a rush and not being able to have a proper good-bye with the kids, but the highlights definitely made this process worthwhile.

Also, shout-out to my mentor teacher; without him, I wouldn’t have made it as far as I did!

 Much love. Much grace.

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If you are interested in giving to your local school system, here are some great organizations to help with various needs of the school-age students in your area.

Schoola

Teach for America

Stand for Children (Louisiana Based)


The Year of 23.

You guys. I am turning 23 years old…. like, Sunday. (Which is weird because for this whole year I kept forgetting I was 22 instead of 21, but I digress..)  Anyway, I am turning 23, and I am so excited! I love birthdays and I am so thankful that I have been able to live another year in this crazy world!

Every year, I try to make resolutions. For New Year’s Eve, I make the “big” life changing ones like healthier living and to be more compassionate.

Birthday resolutions are WAY more fun.

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Every year, starting around my 16th birthday, I set fun little goals for myself. Nothing that is supposed to be deep or incredibly helpful, just fun personal things I want to do. Through these things I learn so much more about myself than the NYE ones, and each year I surprise myself. This past year (the year of 22), I did many things! I started a blog, tried studio yoga classes, traveled, and learned how to make some yummy dishes. This year I am so excited I get to share my list with you!

The Year of 23
  • Run/jog/walk a 5K.
  • Watch 2 Bollywood films
  • Go to a concert (this is an every year thing for me… why give up good goals, right?)
  • Go to a museum and take my time. (No time constraints)
  • Paint a picture that I am proud of.
  • Watch a sunrise (and a sunset).

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How does that look for the year of 23? As I think of more, I will add them; and as I do these things I will cross them off (and probably write a blog post about it… ya know).

Do you have any fun goals for this year? Is there something you think everyone should do at least once a year? Let me know!

Much love. Much grace.

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Give A Little

 

Welcome to another edition of “Give A Little”! Here are some (fairly) recent blog posts I have loved reading! I couldn’t have talked about these topics in a better way.

Be Your Own Goals

Because why try to be like someone else when you can be you? I love this post about setting healthy goals that allow you to want a healthy change to be a better you, not to be like someone else.

Seven Things I Would Rather Be Than Hot

Because being hot is cool and all (see what I did there? haha…) but I don’t think that is the best thing I could be.

Why I Left My Full Time Job to Work at Trader Joe’s

Life in an culture where degrees are king and part time work is unimpressive, this article brings a light that doing what you love is far better than forcing yourself to do a job you hate.

Pregnancy and the Fear of Losing Myself

Alyssa hits the nail on the head with this one. I’m not pregnant, but this is definitely a fear I have about pregnancy in the future. I love how honest she is about this struggle because in the world we live in today, it seems impossible to be anything other than a mom. How do you still remain a person during mommy-hood?

Have a lovely week, friends!

Much love. Much grace.

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Life As An American In Europe

Taylor has been a friend of mine for over eight years. He is such a sweet person and I am so excited to have him on Go Giver! He is currently going to school overseas reversing his role from a welcomer of international students to becoming one himself.

Introducing our first  of “Perspectives Men”,  Taylor Anderson! 


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Living in Germany has definitely been a huge change in my life. I had to learn the national language when I came here and there are some things that classes can’t teach me. I have to venture out of the classroom to experience the culture first-hand and how to use the language in everyday life. By learning the language, I have grown to love the people here. I find them to be wonderful caring people, and I value the friendships I have made here. I love being able to go see my friends close by, being able to go out into town, and meeting up with people to talk.

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All this to say… It isn’t an easy life.

I have had days when it is frustrating that I can’t talk with another person and they can’t understand me.

I have had days when I wish I had enough money to run home really quickly just to be with my family during a problem.

 I am trying to live a life with no regrets.

I only have one shot to do things and I have a big list of goals that I want to accomplish and I don’t want anything or anybody to get in the way of my goals.

Yes, it may seem a bit strange that I decided to study abroad for a full year of my life. It might be strange that I have decided to do something different than most people in the US would not choose to do. In the end I don’t regret making the decision to go study abroad in Germany.  I have been able to learn so much about myself.

“Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things you didn’t do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines, sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover.”

Getting out of my comfort zone has really brought a new perspective about life and the love I feel towards international relations and the cultures around the world. Studying abroad is not for everybody, but I do value and respect people who take it upon themselves to travel. To see the world and to care for other people who might not be Americans. You never know when someday you might need a person that you can’t understand or is not like you. People need to care for people that are different and or who might think in a different way. 


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Taylor Anderson is third year junior from the University of Southern Indiana. He is studying International Studies, German, and Anthropology currently in Marburg, Germany at Philipps Universität Marburg as an international student. He is a proud United States citizen living in Germany and is truly enjoying learning a new language and culture.  By being an international student he has learned that one country does not have to define a person, but instead people can be defined by multiple cultures.

A Letter To My Galentines

Ever since I first heard of Leslie Knope’s idea for Galentine’s Day on Parks and Recreation, I loved it!

For those who don’t know, Galentine’s Day is February 13th, the day before Valentine’s Day. It’s a day to celebrate the sweet girl-friendships you have in your life.

This year as a part of my resolutions, I am trying to be more available and intentional with the sweet ladies in my life. I have allowed myself to be very selfish with my time and now I am trying to give more time to be with friends.

Many of my Galentine’s live out of state (or even out of country!) so this post is dedicated to those sweet ladies (and really any sweet lady!) who are such great friends.

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Dear Galentine,

Girl. You are the best. No REALLY. You are such a wonderful person in my life! You are not only super cool, but you are just full of such life.

Our friendship is something else.

Whenever we talk on the phone or see each other in person, we always pick up where we left off. The silly jokes, the hugs, the tears, and the laughs are always there… no matter what. No matter the distance or time that passes, we can always come back to each other.

You are encouraging.

There are days when I am upset, lonely, or sad; and somehow you know about these days! You send me “Happy Mail” or encouraging messages to lift my spirits. I don’t believe these happen by chance… because they always come at the most perfect times.

You are so graceful.

Like really. I am so bad at being a pen-pal and being intentional (I am trying to change I promise!) and you treat me with such grace and forgiveness. You don’t get upset when I am late with a Christmas gift, if I wait 5 months to send a card, or don’t message you back right away. You are just so understanding and full of love.

You are so loving.

Girl, you listen to me. You listen to my frustrations about school, my confusion about the future, and the joys that happen in my life. You grieve with me and rejoice with me. My triumphs are your triumphs and vice versa. You constantly point me back to what’s important. You bring such joy with your kindness.

Thank you. Thank you. Thank you.

Please know that you are so loved and appreciated on this day (and everyday!). You matter so much to me and I am so glad you are in my life. While you are a bit far, that’s okay. We have Facetime right? I love you, Galentine!

Much love. Much grace.

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Ps. This is the cutest cartoon ever. 🙂

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