This year, my first annual Rookie of the Year is Erica Goodell from Fivay High School!
She was gracious enough to answer a few quick questions for me before heading out for summer break:
1. What inspired you to become a teacher?
I was actually a finance major when I started college. I started working for the A.V.I.D. program in Duval County three days a week and really enjoyed helping with the kids. My two aunts have also been teaching for 20+ years and I have helped them throughout my entire life. I spent many weekends and summers helping make packets, copies, and laminating posters and really enjoyed the school atmosphere.
2. What kind of student were you in high school?
In high school I was an A and B student who worked very hard to earn good grades. My academics were always my number one priority. I pushed myself in honors, dual enrollment, and AP courses in addition to being an athlete and part of the interact club.
3. What success have you experienced in your first year?
This first year has been a year full of learning curves. Since the first day of school I have had success and failures and I constantly adjust my teaching according to student performance. I think surviving my first year was the biggest success. I also had a .500 season with my tennis team and my students scored well on the U.S. History EOC exam.
4. What strategies did you find most successful?
The most successful strategy I used this year was being flexible. Understand nothing goes as planned and be willing to work on the fly. Listen to your students, being personable will help build positive relationships with your students and cause your students to work for you.
6. Was there one person who assisted you this year? What would you like to say to them?
The one person I would like to thank this year would be Mr. Johnson. He has continuously been available and willing to help me with anything I’ve needed throughout the school year. He has provided me with teaching advice, career advice, and been a shoulder to lean on when there were days I wanted to quit. Thank you so much for always being available and checking on me throughout this first year!
7. What one piece of advice would you give to a first year teacher?
Advice I would give a first year teacher is to always be flexible and willing to make adjustments, there are going to be some things that work and others that don’t. Remember to take time for yourself! It is easy to get consumed into your lessons and grading. Making time for yourself will be beneficial for your students and yourself in the long run, so put the computer and papers down and go out it wont make or break you.