Today we get to hear from current teacher Aimee Grundberg! After graduating from BYU, Aimee has started her first year of working as a second grade teacher at Apple Valley Elementary School. She gave some insight on what it's like to be a first year teacher, what she learned while attending BYU, and some advice on what to keep in mind as you start into the teaching programs.
While talking to Aimee, I expressed the concern that many soon-to-be teachers feel: how do you do it all? It was great to hear from a current teacher that it's okay to feel a little intimidated, "The first couple of weeks [teaching] I remember thinking 'Is this really what I want to do forever?' But my principal said, 'That’s normal!' Now I can’t imagine doing anything else. I love it...It's one of the most fulfilling things I have ever done!" Despite the challenges...or maybe because of them...teaching is so fulfilling!
In fact, when asked about her greatest concerns and challenges as a teacher, Aimee never mentioned salary, prestige, or anything like that. She said "My biggest concern is that I am not doing enough for my students," Aimee helped me see that getting into the classroom and helping your students learn really is as fulfilling as everyone says. We really can help make a difference, and as Aimee expressed, try to do all we can for our students.
In fact, Aimee made it a point to say that there really is no need to fear. "Don’t be afraid of failing. There have been so many lessons that I have taught and I bombed. But, my principal has helped me see that when we do this, we can better diagnose our students' needs and see what we can improve on. It's more powerful for our future teaching," Failure is a part of learning...while I had never considered that before, Aimee made it clear that failure in the classroom is just another step toward success.
Finally, she made it clear how lucky we are as McKay School students to have the professors that we do. "They know what they are talking about and they know the value of education," Aimee said. She went on to talk about some of her favorite professors and classes. It made me excited for my future classes just listening to her! We really are blessed with some of the best professors in the world to help us through our journey to become teachers.
Aimee finished by telling me about her favorite moments in the classroom: "I love those moments when you can see that they’re actually learning something...those moments when every single student is listening and engaged and grasping something, those are the best moments ever. I also love the little notes they give you, or the little jokes that they come up and tell you...They just want to spend time with you, and be like your best friends,"
As you are starting out, or continuing, your teaching program, follow Aimee's advice to "Be your own teacher...Work with your own strengths," as "It is so worth it to watch those kids learn and grow,".
For more information on becoming a teacher, set up a time to meet with one of the student ambassadors. Email us at: firstname.lastname@example.org