Reflections of First Year Teacher

Today we received an email from a proud TeacherReady alum, Diana Shenkel. Diana completed TeacherReady last year and transferred her Florida professional certificate to California; she was offered a position teaching at the same school in which she completed her TeacherReady field experience! Below is her story, reflections of first year teacher:

reflections of first year teacher shenkelReflecting back on my first year of teaching, I am so grateful to how ready TeacherReady has prepared me for the challenges I have faced this year. On so many levels, I owe TeacherReady and all of its staff my most sincerest gratitude for putting together such a wonderful program and curriculum.

There have been several instances in my classroom where I have integrated certain activities I learned from the TR modules; one in particular I continue to use–that my students love–is a vocabulary activity called “Kick Me”. One of our TR lessons which covered ways to engage and teach vocabulary had posted this video of how to get your students up, moving, engaged, conversing, problem solving, etc. I had to modify the activity to fit my 2nd grade level, but they really love the game. reflections of first year teacher

I use formative assessments every day in my class. TeacherReady truly provided me with the tools to be able to choose which assessment is right for my students, a variety of assessments to use, and what to do with the results. All the formative assessments I use from exit tickets to quick writes, I have learned through TR. This has helped me know my students better and be able to pin point where they need the help or where they have demonstrated mastery.

 I would suggest to TeacherReady students now to really do the work in writing up your lesson plans and SAVE YOUR WORK! It is going to save SO much time when you are in your classroom and the last thing you want to do is rewrite or re-create a lesson plan you’ve already done before! I go back and refer to my notes, assignments, and lesson plans I submitted for lessons on a regular basis. So keep those handy!!

Diana’s story is an awesome reminder to our TeacherReady team of how grateful we are to have the opportunity to listen to the stories of many passionate individuals who come to TeacherReady for the opportunity to become a teacher, and to make a difference in the lives of students. Check out Diana’s classroom blog here. Thank you, Diana, for being a wonderful ambassador of TeacherReady and a fire starter for your students at Holy Family School.


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Become a teacher with the assistance of TeacherReady. TeacherReady offers individuals an opportunity to earn a professional teaching certificate from the State of Florida; it was developed by teachers for teachers and is a member of the NCATE/CAEP accredited Professional Education Unit at the University of West Florida.


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