This post was originally posted on https://ncedleaders.blogspot.com/ on July 3rd , 2019
When I started my teaching career, (15 years ago), my mother gave me this hanging sign that says “3 Reasons for Teaching - June, July, August”. I hang on to it just because my mother gave it to me; However, you’ll never see this sign in my classroom because summer breaks are not my reasons for teaching.
Now, don’t take me wrong, I love summer breaks and I always take full advantage to recharge and refresh before the start of another school year. But as good as summer breaks might be, they’re NOT my reasons for teaching
The path to the teaching profession was not an ordinary path for me. I immigrated to the United States at the age of 15 years old. I started high school with the hopes and desire to graduate and go to college to be the teacher I’ve always wanted to be. From day one, I embraced school and education. Breaking all sorts of barriers, I was able to learn the English language and get all the required credits for graduation. But unfortunately, everything fell apart when I failed American History - Regents exam. With disappointment and a heart in a million pieces, I took the bus home and never went back. In 1997 I became part of the Latino High school dropout.
Failing at school made me question everything I believed I knew about myself. I started working as a cashier where every time I scanned an item the beep was a constant reminder of my failure. I didn’t believe I was capable to do anything else.
Years later I decided to rewrite my personal narrative by returning to school. I found a local community college and obtained my GED. I went on from there to find success in college getting y associate’s degree, my bachelor’s and then my Master’s degree. Today, I am where I need to be. Inspiring students every day to reach their highest potential. You see, I had potential within me all along. What I didn’t have was someone who believed in me. Someone in my corner encouraging me to find my passion and help me fulfill my human potential. I strive to be an educator who will be for my students what I didn’t always have: someone to believe in them.
So, if you ask me what my reason for teaching is, I would say it is INSPIRING MY STUDENTS TO KNOW THEIR POTENTIAL and PURPOSE.
Our experiences, our potential, and our purpose are the source and core for our professional passion. We need to maintain a burning passion for what we do in order to inspire our students. We cannot expect our students to tap into their highest potential and follow their passion when we ourselves are not passionate about our profession. Of course, if you are reading this, I have no doubt that you are passionate about what you do, otherwise, you wouldn’t be reading this post.
Having a very clear understanding of who we are meant to be for our students should drive our intentional efforts to maintain a burning professional passion. These intentional efforts could be very simple but effective to reinforce our WHY:
What's Your Why?
So now, I ask you as I close,
See, you have to believe, that as educators, we have the most amazing opportunity every day to uplift lives and help students find their own purpose and own passion.
Keep your fire burning and lets never stop believing and embracing the responsibility we have to protect and inspire our students’ own potential and burning passion.
Thank you for reading!