Noyce Scholar Profile
Undergraduate major or graduate field of study: Mathematics
Subject area(s) and grade level teaching focus: High School Mathematics
Category of scholarship/fellowship:
Fifth year or post-baccalaureate Noyce scholar
Name of Noyce institution:
California State University, San Marcos
Current academic or teaching status:
First year teaching
School and school district:
San Juan Hills High School in Capistrano Unified School District
I knew I wanted to teach since I was in first grade so I participated in a myriad of activities with children. In high school, I realized that I wanted to teach math and in my senior year, I knew I would teach high school math. I went into college thinking I would major in math and minor in Physics. However, because Physics was such a new program, there were several scheduling conflicts so I instead minored in Spanish. I have tutored from 8th grade Prealgebra to AP Calculus and AP Statistics. I also had much experience tutoring college students in such subjects ranging from College Algebra to Calculus II and Discrete Math. Another experience I had was being an SI leader, where I attended all the classes for a course and schedule outside hours where students could come to me for help. I did that for Precalculus for 3 semesters, Calculus I for 3 semesters, and College Algebra for 1 semester. I also was a MAPS instructor over the summer for CSUSM, working with students who had failed the entry level math requirement in order to help them pass the test afterward. Lastly, this past summer, I worked with Upward Bound, helping underserved teens prepare for their next years of high school.
Why do you want to teach:
It all started in first grade. My family had moved to Escondido right before my first grade year began. My parents, however, thought that school started in September when it had actually commenced in July. When I came in, I was shown to my desk and the day began. Shortly after, the teacher told us to get our crayons out of our desks, but I had none in mine! I started to panic, but my new friends got a box for me and all was well. I then vowed I would become a teacher so that I would be a nice teacher and no one would have to have a mediocre first day like me. Now, the reason I teach is I want to help students grasp the major concepts of math. I want it to make sense to them.
Describe a memorable teaching experience:
During my first semester of student teaching, I did a critical thinking activity with my classes. I had explained the activity to them and set them upon it. I walked around the room to make sure they were doing the activity and to see what they were writing. One student in particular had been struggling in my class and when I walked over to the group she was working with, she asked me how to do this particular problem. I looked at her paper and saw a blank, then looked at her friend’s paper and saw a correct answer. I pointed this out to them and she said, “That was my answer, but they said it was wrong!” It made me sad that she had had such little confidence in her answer, but she was the only student who had understood that problem so it was a very validating experience for her.
What does the Noyce program mean to you:
Because of this scholarship, I’ve had the opportunity to go to a conference and a summer seminar. Both were very well thought out and were quite enjoyable. The summer seminar was especially neat since it was for 2 weeks so we really got to know each other. I feel like I met other teachers with similar ideals and it was really nice to talk with everyone about different things that were happening in their classrooms. I look forward to attending other Noyce events because of my experiences with the summer seminar.