Monday, April 16, 2012

Another Semester in the Books- Sarah Kraayenbrink

Another Semester in the Books!

It’s hard to believe that I only have five more days left of student teaching.  The epitome of my college career is coming to an end, and I look ahead to the future and the joys of being a teacher.   Looking back, time has gone really fast.  Four months ago I was moving to Denver feeling anxious about what lay ahead for the semester.  Now, however, I feel well-prepared and excited for my career as an elementary teacher.   

My name is Sarah Kraayenbrink, and I am from Sioux Center, Iowa.  I didn’t know that I wanted to become an elementary teacher until the end of my sophomore year of college.  Needless to say, I had a lot of catching up to do in order to complete my schooling in just four years.  After having field experience in numerous schools around the Waverly area, I knew that I wanted to experience teaching in an urban setting in order to prepare myself for any kind of teaching job that I might consider in the future.

My experience in two different inner city schools has opened my eyes to the diversity of students.  I started in third grade at Cowell Elementary.  About 90-95% of the students at the school are Hispanic, and I gained a lot of insight and experience working with English Language Learners (ELL).  The school that I am currently working at is Ellis Elementary.  I am in kindergarten, and there are students from Libya, Russia, Albania, Thailand and Mexico.  Nineteen of the twenty-seven students in my class are ELL, and I have enjoyed learning about their home countries and the languages that they speak.  The students have taught me as much as I hope to have taught them, and I have an even deeper appreciation for the diversity around me.

Besides student teaching, I have enjoyed exploring Denver.  A few places that I visited during my time here were the Denver Art Museum, Botanical Gardens, Denver Zoo, a Nuggets game, Balistreri Vineyards, Hammond’s Candy Factoryand and so much more.  I am going to miss Denver and the students that I have been working with a lot, but I am excited to come back in the near future to visit and to enjoy the beauty of this city and the mountains again!

Sarah Kraayenbrink 

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