Teaching is a sincere passion of mine, and the opportunity to connect with students is a central incentive to my career. Whether I am organizing a community service-based assignment at a museum for a TESOL course, reviewing multimodal Discourse Analysis by meticulously analyzing Political debates for an Applied Linguistics course, or teaching baseball-related idioms at a baseball stadium with an ESL class, my foremost goal in the classroom is to impart my passion for education through various means of engagement. Passion translates to sustained motivation, and I believe that sustained motivation is the path to long-term learning and critical thinking skills.
I seek to empower students by prioritizing critical thought and creating an active learning environment. In doing so, students develop both a capacity and a comfort for challenging themselves. I believe that successful teachers must engage students directly to maximize active student involvement through provocative questions that lead to fair and open discussions, presentations, and peer-to-peer interaction. When, in addition to mastering the course material, students strive to harness both critical and abstract thinking skills, they leave the course better prepared for meeting challenges beyond the university and into the professional realm.
Continual assessment that reflects well-defined learning goals is crucial to sustaining student motivation. When students know what skills and knowledge are being tested and why, they can more successfully dedicate themselves to their learning. Assignments must be meaningful and relevant by assigning value to critical commentary and successful application of course theory. Furthermore, when feedback is provided by peers in addition to the teacher, students take greater agency in their learning. This agency lends itself to students taking greater responsibility for their own learning process and goals.
I thrive in connecting with students on both a personal and group level, and this connection is essential for building a healthy learning environment and a trusted student-teacher relationship. Fostering and sustaining students’ willingness to challenge what they think they know about learning begins with building trust and closing the distance between teacher and student. A dynamic teaching environment that varies its learning styles sustains novelty in and out of the classroom. By meeting students at their learning style, creating challenges that stimulate curiosity, and situating the learning in relevant and current theory, teachers must cultivate student motivation. I am honored to incorporate teaching as a cornerstone of my career, and I am thrilled to continue learning how to be successful with each day in the classroom.