By Jaclyn Sutherby, WCEHD ’21
I’ve known that I wanted to be a teacher since I was a just mere seven years old. I used to “play school” with friends on playdates (including detailed quizzes that I perfected for hours on end on Microsoft Word), and even make my parents write math problems on napkins for me to solve when we were out to dinner at a restaurant.
So, when I went through the college process in high school, I focused my attention on schools that offered education programs. BU stuck out to me for a number of reasons. Here at the Wheelock College of Education and Human Development, we have the opportunity to be in a classroom (whether it be preschool, elementary, middle, etc.) during our first year of college. At BU Wheelock, many of the courses and lectures are coupled with field experiences. As a second semester freshman, I was an assistant teacher in a kindergarten classroom in Lexington, Massachusetts. For someone who is passionate about education and helping children, I knew that this was the right path for me as I was able to jump right into the field. However, for someone else who is feeling their way through college and trying to see if teaching is the right profession for them, this classroom experience is a true eye-opener to the field of education where you learn what it takes to be an educator.
Now, as a second semester sophomore, I look back on the past year since starting my field experience in the classroom. Along with the kindergarten class, I’ve observed at the Early Childhood Learning Lab (a preschool located within BU Wheelock) and been a mentor to a second-grade student at the Trotter Elementary School in Dorchester, Massachusetts. Through much reflection, I continue to ask myself, “What if I didn’t hit snooze today? What if I didn’t go to class today?” As a pre-service teacher, I can’t hit snooze anymore and won’t be able to do so in the future – I have to be there for my students! I often think that if I chose to miss class one day, I would’ve missed out on a plethora of opportunities and experiences. Missed out on important conversations with people and further connecting with them. Missed out on building friendships with my peers in our BU Wheelock community. Missed out on something amazing that happened to my second-grade mentee that she had been waiting to tell me in person all week. Miss out on watching my students grow.
Reality is, once I’m a teacher, I can’t miss out like that. Having that thought in the back of my mind is definitely a motivation point during my time here at BU Wheelock and beyond. Since teaching has been my dream, I have to get up off my bed and into the classrooms. I’m thankful to be here at BU Wheelock because of the strong community of fellow pre-service teachers, professors, and children who put a smile on my face every day.