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Paige Carlson

Professor Bobeldyk
Education 102
4 December 2013
Teacher Identity
In my education, I can only remember two teachers from my elementary school and one
teacher from my high school. Those three teachers are the ones who made an attempt to assist me
with my learning disabilities and helped me grow in who I am today. The two teachers from
elementary school who made a difference in my education are Mrs. Psynski and Mrs. Boyd.
They helped me to see that I just as bright as the rest of the students, I just have to learn
differently because of my learning disabilities. They helped me see a beautiful and bright girl
that was inside of me. From high school, I only remember one teacher who significantly made an
impact in my life. Her name was Mrs. Render and she was one of the most hardworking teachers
I have ever come across. She did everything in her power to help me with anything I needed and
to provide me with educational methods to help me advocate for myself in my education. Mrs.
Render is the reason that I decided to become a Special Education teacher.
My education went like this: I attended a Montessori school until 2nd grade and then
switched over to North Barrington Elementary school for the rest of my elementary education. I
attended Station Campus for middle school and Carmel Catholic for high school. I was 40
minutes away from my high school and rode in a car pool to school with people who caused my
brother and I to be consistently late. That lateness stayed with me and eventually it became part
of my normal morning routine. In high school a couple instances in my education were
particulary difficult for me. The first instance was in my senior year advanced pre-calc class with

Mrs. Rejc. She expressed annoyance when I would ask if I could leave to take my test in an
alternative setting, which was indicated on my IEP and 504 plans. She would ask me if I really
needed to do take my tests in alternative settings in a snotty tone. The annoyance that she
expressed motivated me to become a teacher that will respect the needs of all my students. The
second instance was also in my senior year. In my environmental science class I was leaving to
take a test in the alternative setting and I heard a girl saying that she wished that she could take
her tests in an alternate setting so that she could cheat on all her tests. She was implying that all
the special education students did was cheat on our tests, but she could not have been more
incorrect. I remember turning around and telling her that the only way you could take a test in an
alternative setting was if you had documented learning disabilitie(s) and that the rest of the
Special Education students and I do not go to the alternate setting to cheat. This instance hurt me
initially, but then motivated me to be someone who was aware of the struggles of others around
me. I learned to be someone who only spoke to build others up, someone who still strives to be a
supportive system for others. My goal is that I will be a support system for my students.
In essence, my normal education is filled with difficulty, but because of the three
teachers who made me have hope in education, I know ways to advocate for myself, I know the
teacher I want to become, and I know that my disabilities are hidden inabilities.
I hope to teach Special Education students between grades 2-4, so I have set forth many goals to
prepare myself for this possible career. I see the ideal classroom being an environment where my
students are comfortable with sharing struggles they are having outside and inside the classroom,
I hope that I can be that teacher like the three teachers were to me. I want to be that teacher who
makes an impact in the lives of her student, someone that they will stay in contact with for the
rest of their lives, and a teacher who can effectively educate my students and be that support

system that they need. The support system that I was only given a few times in my education. At
Calvin, I have learned that movement and Christian perspective are crucial in the classroom,
especially with younger students. In light of these discoveries, I will try to open all my classes
with bible reading and involve movement into my lessons. In this education course, I have
learned that accountability partners are very beneficial to students, and that I will utilize this idea
in my classrooms.
Over the next few years, I will need to work on my punctuality. This will be the number
one thing that has the potential of holding me back from job opportunities and in my career. I
also need to learn how to appropriately respond to situations when other people disagree with
me. I will also need to prepare myself on how to respond to situations that could occur with my
students, their parents, and colleagues. Strengths that I have that will help me become an ideal
teacher are my respectfulness, my professionalism in communication, and my motivation to
always do the best that I can. These three teachers, the courses I have taken so far at Calvin, and
the opportunities I have had serving/teaching children have led me to be in the education
program at Calvin. I do not just want to be an educator, I want to be a teacher who makes a
significant impact in the lives of my students and excels at teaching my students the essentials of