Week 13: Everyone is the Same

This semester was the first step into my future as a teacher. I am required to do service learning as a teacher assistant for a class I am assigned too. From there, I bond with the students and the teacher and become their class TA. I assist them with homework if needed, I play with them, and just make sure they overall feel comfortable and safe at school. It is not the students I only help with, I also help the teacher in any way possible. If she needs me to help a student one-on-one, then I am there. If she needs me to give a certain student more attention, then I am already there. Sometimes when theres a large class population and only one teacher, it can get very difficult and stressful for everyone. That is why I am there, to put ease for everyone and make things more lifted.

Throughout this semester, I have learned many things. Not just from the teacher but also the students. They taught me patience and appreciation, as all they do is appreciate the small, simple things in life. I was opened to a new chapter of my life as I was getting first hand experience in the field I want to pursue in. Today, I was opened to something that made me get another look into what I want to do with my life. Every morning, we start off the day with a “good morning” circle. This means, every single day of the school year, students say good morning to someone new each day. Not only are the students just from that class, but each and every day, they bring in the friends from the special education class. They make them feel welcomed and always make sure that they feel like they are one of them.

Today for some reason was really special to me. As every student had such warm, open hearts to the friends from next door and didn’t once ever look or treat them differently. They talked to them like how they would with their classmates, and played with them with the same enthusiasm as they did with their peers. This is what really touched my heart, as in today’s society, people with special needs are still looked down upon. They are still treated lower than others and don’t get the same respect as they should. However, the saddest thing is that the education system has yet to make any severe changes to incorporate the students with special needs. This results in those students growing up and feeling like they are not worthy like “normal” kids. However, what makes me appreciate my teacher the most is that she already includes those with special needs without being told so. She treats them just like her other students and incorporates them in everything just like they’re supposed too. This is what opened my eyes today about working to become a special ed teacher, instead of just a teacher.

I’m tired of seeing new’s article after new’s article on how a person was discriminated from a job or a store simply because they were “different”. It is 2019, and headlines like that should not even be thought of. My teacher has influenced me so much as she is my biggest role model. She is the reason when our world gets better little by little.

4 Replies to “Week 13: Everyone is the Same”

  1. I was offered a TA position as well and I wasn’t sure if I was going to take the position. After reading this post it has made me confident in choosing to take the position. I am glad that you have talked about how the students impacted you as well. I hope that taking this position will help build my resume, but also something I can learn from. Thank you for sharing this with me I am happy that you had the opportunity to become a TA!

  2. Wow, that is really awesome that you have been able to experience this. Not only that but at the fact you were so open minded in this situation, you realized although you’re over the students you can still learn from them. I believe as adults/young adults we forget how much we can learn from each other or even children younger than us, they teach us so much more than what we already know. Like you said you’ve learned patience with helping your students. I think it is super dope that you were able to be a TA and get to impact and be impacted by your students.

  3. I truly admire what your teacher is doing to include these special needs kids in everyday learning and I can relate heavily to this topic. Growing up the so of an art teacher, I would always go to my mother’s work when I had free time and I would watch the students around the class interact with each other. If any kid was not being included in conversation, learning activities, or was just being flat out discriminated, my mother would always reach out to give these kids a boost in their day because they could not do it themselves. These kids then learned how do be happier than before and there is no better feeling then seeing these kids with a smile on their faces at the end of a great day.

  4. This was cool to read about what it is like to be a TA. I have always wondered whether they actually wanted to be there or did they just show up to get their certification. It sounds like you are passionate about this field and that is interesting to see. My aunt works with special needs kids but I never really asked her what her job was like, so it was also interesting to read about how that is like. Funny enough I wanted to be a Math teacher before coming to VCU. I changed my mind due to teachers not getting paid enough, and I enjoyed applying my math skills to other things like engineering. This was a good read and I am glad I read it.

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