Thanks to the flexibility and countless opportunities offered by the Dartmouth Plan (D-Plan), I am heading back to school this fall, literally. I will be spending the next 10 weeks of my senior year working at the Samuel Morey Elementary School in Vermont, assisting in their first and second grade classrooms. What is really neat is that the second grade teacher is a Dartmouth ’07!
Teaching at Samuel Morey has offered me a third unique hands on teaching experience to round out my pre-professional teaching opportunities. Last fall during my off term at home I worked in a first grade classroom at a suburban, private school, this past summer I taught 8th grade Chemistry to low-income, minority students from Cambridge, and now I am helping out in a rural, socioeconomically diverse school, with, for the most part, one classroom per grade.
While most of my friends are spending their fall evenings reading textbooks about microeconomics or computer programming, I am journaling ideas for my future classroom and brainstorming ways to help the students conceptualize place value, learn to tell time, and when to add “ck” to the end of a word and when “k” is all that you need to be ready for my next day at school.
While the Dartmouth Education Department is absolutely outstanding and pushes me to think critically and creatively about teaching, learning, and education, spending 50 full days in a classroom affords me insight and practice that a college lecture cannot match.