Bachelor of Science in Interdisciplinary Studies with Certification in Elementary Education
Fifth Grade Teacher
With a true passion for helping others learn, Lindsey N. has been teaching elementary school students for more than five years. She earned a B.S.I.S. with certification in elementary education from Texas A&M University in 2005 and is currently working on her Master of Education in Educational Leadership and Policy Studies with Texas Principal Certification. She has taught students in several grade levels, but is currently teaching the fifth grade. She said she loves seeing how independent her students are becoming in their learning ability as their discussions reflect their deepening critical-thinking skills.
Why did you choose to major in elementary education?
I chose my major in elementary education because I have always loved children. I love seeing the “light bulb” moment when a child learns something new or grasps a difficult concept. Being a part of a child’s learning experience is a powerful thing.
What did you like/dislike about majoring in elementary education?
I liked the fact that majoring in elementary education afforded me hands-on experience observing and teaching in a classroom before being on my own. I also loved getting to collaborate with other people who wanted to teach and those who were experienced teachers. Sharing and collaborating are an integral part of teaching. I think the only thing I disliked about majoring in education was the fact that others always seemed to think my major was easy. Teaching is not an easy profession, and passionate teachers don’t go into the field for holidays and summers off.
How has your major impacted your career or influenced your career path?
My major has impacted my career by allowing me to have numerous hours of practice before becoming a classroom teacher. It also helped me to remember to always be a lifelong learner myself and to stay connected to my personal love of learning.
What knowledge/skills did you obtain from majoring in elementary education that you still put to use in your current position?
The most useful knowledge and skills that I gained are the different types of classroom management. Knowing about the experts in the field of discipline (like Harry Wong) and what they say about the topic are invaluable daily. I also continually use the skills I gained in lesson planning. I plan about 35 lessons per week, and majoring in elementary education gave me a background in the structure and organization of effective lesson plans.
What advice would you give to students thinking about majoring in elementary education?
My advice to those wanting to major in elementary education would be to find a local elementary school near you and go in and ask to observe teachers. Observe closely how they manage a classroom of 25 students and teach content matter. Observe how they manage the paperwork and administrative aspects of the teaching profession. Talk to novice and experienced teachers and write everything down.
Teaching is a challenge, but one can learn so much from observing and talking with those already in the profession. My first year of teaching, I was at the school building from 7:00 a.m. to 7:30 p.m. The first year requires a lot of work in planning and building your classroom. It does get better though! Put in the hours and labor that first year, and it helps each following year flow smoother.