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Distinguished Teacher April Joslen

What advice would you give to people considering a career in teaching?

The advice I would give to teachers is to keep your heart and mind open when you embark on this journey. Enjoy the time with the students, keeping in mind that all students are unique and bring with them equally unique personalities, needs and learning styles. Don't take it personal when students show no interest in a lesson you spent all night developing or when they have behavioral issues in your classroom. Many students are dealing with life issues outside of our classroom that are way beyond what we can imagine.
Most importantly, never forget that you are the deciding force in the classroom; you have the power to either build a student up, increasing their confidence and self-esteem, or to break a student down, making school a very unpleasant place for them to be.

What's the best thing about teaching?

The best possible thing about teaching is watching the growth in students and knowing you played some role, no matter how small, in helping them achieve a goal or overcome an obstacle in their lives. When former students return to visit me, I know in some way, something I did stuck with them and has had meaning in their lives.