From Negative to Positive

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by MiguelCallejas
Last updated 3 years ago

Discipline:
Language Arts
Subject:
Writing
Grade:
6,7,8,9

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From Negative to Positive

From Negative to Positive: Why I Decided to Become a Teacher

My decision of entering the teaching field was influenced by a series of events and irregularities that I encountered throughout my life in the education system of my hometown in Mexico, and here in the State of Texas. The Mexican education system under which I was educated during my early childhood was characterized by the evil presence of old-schooled teachers, whose power and authority were unquestionable. Those teachers often relied on the use of verbal and physical violence as means of correction and enforcement of knowledge. The lack of laws and the lack parental involvement contributed to the expansion of violence within the classroom, which created an environment of fear and terror that often traumatized students and prevented them from learning. As I grew older, I became aware of the relevance of the problem and decided that I wanted to do something about it. I wanted to create a pleasant environment in which students could express themselves freely, while acquiring the knowledge and skills necessary to become successful members of society. Even though I was not old enough to make decisions, I decided that teaching was the only career that could help me to change that reality.

When I turned sixteen, my parents decided to move to the United States in search of so-called American dream. Our dream consisted of a better life and better educational opportunities. My parents wanted me to learn English, graduate high school and pursue a degree in higher education. Right after my arrival to this country, I enrolled in high school and became aware of the enormous difference that existed between the Mexican and the American education system. Not only were the American schools better equipped with technology and well trained teachers, but they also offered their students an environment of respect and equality that promoted learning. This opportunity helped me to see and judge the conditions of my old school district from a different perspective. I was certain that something needed to be changed in order to help my old friends and the generations to come. Thus, I decided that I had to bring some of the newly found American greatness to the old styled Mexican classrooms. In my mind, I had compromised with my people and with myself, and teaching was the medium that I could use to help others.

All the negativity that I have found in the educational institutions to which I have attended since I started my schooling has motivated me to look for a change in the way in which we implement school programs and teach our children. I would like to turn all that negativity into inspiration and motivation to keep moving forward until I accomplish my goals and dreams. By entering the teaching field, I intend to push for a reform in the way in which we train and treat children who arrive in this country lacking the skills and knowledge necessary to be successful in school and in society. In order to accomplish my goal, I would like to become a Spanish/ESL teacher and work in public schools. The acquisition of a second language and the introduction to other cultures would allow my students to open their minds to the world and to become more tolerant and respectful human beings.

Throughout my high school career, I had the opportunity of meeting outstanding teachers whose number one priority was their students’ learning. Unfortunately, that attribute was not applicable to all the teachers who were part of the high school to which I attended, especially to those who were part of the English and Spanish Departments. As a student of English as a second language and a heritage speaker of Spanish, I came to experience the bad implementation of the programs in those subjects. Often, the students of ESL would be let in their own with no kind of support from the school staff or their parents. On top of that, they would be assigned to basic Spanish classes in which they were taught things that they already knew. In my opinion, this was a waste of time and resources because none of the information that the students were processing was going to be helpful to their stay in this country. Once again, I became aware of the lack of parental involvement and started to believe that having bilingual teachers in our schools could be helpful to increase the participation of parents in school activities. For a second time, I decided that I desired to become a teacher because I wanted to reform the programs that were targeted to non- English speakers and therefore, make a difference in their lives.

By: Miguel Callejas

Source: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZANBvuS_iDU

Notes:Graphics and background are property of Glogter.


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