Noyce Scholar Profile
Undergraduate major or graduate field of study: Mathematics, Education
Subject area(s) and grade level teaching focus: Mathematics, grades 6-12, Science, grades 5-9
Category of scholarship/fellowship:
Name of Noyce institution:
Florida State University/ FSU-TEACH
Current academic or teaching status:
School and school district:
Amos P. Godby High School, Leon County Schools
Originally from Normal, Illinois, I moved to Florence, Italy for my first two semesters in college, then to London for my first college summer semester. I moved to Tallahassee in August 2008 and have been living there since. Currently, I live with my two special-needs dogs in a house I bought in April 2010. I will be starting my first year of teaching this year at Amos P. Godby High School in Tallahassee, Florida, teaching Algebra. I hope to coach at the school as well (anything from cross country, volleyball, basketball, or track and field). I have also been working at the National High Magnetic Field Laboratory, in the education outreach center, as a teacher for SciGirls, an intensive science camp geared towards middle grades girls to help inspire them to go into the sciences. I also help with research surrounding the program.
Why do you want to teach:
Teaching is in my blood. My dad has been a teacher for about thirty years, and I have always looked up to him. He showed me how rewarding teaching can be. My inspiration to go into teaching came from my father, but my decision to persevere difficult college classes to stay with the dream deals more with my potential to impact the lives of children. The fact that every day I will have a chance to say just the right thing and inspire someone to work hard to either find what they love or, if they already have a passion, to pursue that passion with everything they have, that’s what keeps me coming back for more.
Describe a memorable teaching experience:
My first week in student teaching, I was observing one of my classes (before taking over). The class was a remedial 7th grade math class and had a student with Down’s Syndrome and a student with Asperger’s Syndrome in it. My mentor teacher was trying a new grouping arrangement and had actually grouped the two students together to work on measures of central tendency. I was in awe that these two students, who many people write off as being incapable and/or incompetent, completed the activity before any other group in the class and actually came up to the front of the class to teach them how they went through the exercise. It warmed my heart to see these two overcome expectations and work together so well– listening to each other and speaking clearly for the rest of the class to hear.
What does the Noyce program mean to you:
My education certification program prepared me for standard pedagogy and classroom management issues. Noyce has showed me that, while I can’t be prepared for everything, I can be prepared to handle anything. Our mentors have used their own experiences to show that there really is no being prepared for every little happening that could occur, but being able to accept that anything can and will happen and keep going through the day-week-month-year. That’s what’s most important.