Beth Hannon is a former Teaching Fellow (2007-09) and is now a National Recruitment Manager
1. The Achievement Gap is wide, but you alone can help close it
By 4th grade, African-American and Latino students are, on average, nearly three academic years behind their white peers. As a Teaching Fellow you can work with middle school students in hands-on projects that accelerate their basic understanding of core subject areas. Trust me, they will listen to you if you tell them that fractions are cool.
2.Laughter is good for your health
I can think of multiple times where tears were actually streaming down my face. The kids’ humor, their ability to surprise you, and the funny situations you get in as a first-time educator make laughter essential medicine for your fellowship experience.
3. Project management can’t be taught in a college classroom
They’ve written books from the comfort of offices, but no expert has ever had the intense, front-line, “boot camp”, experience of the fellowship. Learn, first hand, how tools and skills in project management, lesson planning, and academic coaching can only be mastered with practice.
4. Your roller skates need to be dusted off
Seriously, when was the last time you had a valid reason to go roller skating?
5.What doesn’t kill us makes us stronger
Middle school youth will rock you to the core. If they don’t break you, they will respond to your style and love you. There’s no greater joy than building lasting relationships with students and helping them see their amazing potential.
6. Everyone needs a Jaquon in their life
My first month on the job was tough – I didn’t know what I was doing. Then, Jaquon walked into my office. “Hey! Are you Ms. B?” They were the words that changed my life. Jaquon moved to Austin, TX after Katrina. Alone, scared, and getting bullied for his accent, Jaquon had heard about Citizen Schools – a program that builds leadership and teamwork. He wanted to be part of a team. 5 years later, I still visit Jaquon and talk to him regularly. He’s become a caring, smart, and entrepreneurial young sophomore and his future is bright.
7. Being agents of change requires a strong, resilient team
Jane Addams once said, “The good we secure for ourselves is precarious and uncertain until it is secured for all of us and incorporated into our common life.” Education is the common fabric of our societies. Changing education will take a movement. The team is ready, we’ve assembled. Will you join us and secure the very best education for the youth of our future?
Apply for the Teaching Fellowship here. If you have any questions about the Fellowship experience ask in the comments section!