Today, my heart is so full. I knew this day had to come, it is so bittersweet.
For some, it is a regular Wednesday in June, but for me, it was my last day working as an Educational Assistant at St-Anne Catholic School in Cornwall, ON.
In late April, the opportunity to take on a weekly morning position as an EA kind of fell into my hands. Despite having ever entered or even heard of the school, I didn’t hesitate to accept the position and started the first week of May. “This was going to be a new adventure” I thought to myself. I had yet to be an EA at an elementary school, how exciting! My schedule varied day by day, however, I was spending most of my day supporting students in JK/SK to Gr 3.
I have to admit, the first couple weeks blew me out of the water…
“Is this what it is really like to teach in elementary school?” I asked myself, “Man, oh man… Glad I’m getting qualified to teach upper years students“. However, once I got into the swing of things, started connecting with students and staff, my entire perception changed. And this is why:
Isn’t it amazing walking into a school every morning, where students and staff are smiling, greeting you good morning, laughing and are genuinely happy? I am so grateful to have experienced that for 9 weeks! I have never felt such a strong connection to a school community, where staff is supportive, students are respectful and eager to learn. Of course, not everyone is perfect and fits in that box, but the vibe of this school is unlike anything I have seen before. Teachers and administration are progressive thinkers who embrace a growth mindset in their classroom. That is why my heart is so full.
As a teacher candidate, any experience is good experience. Any opportunity to learn and grow is an opportunity you should take. I encourage pre-service teachers to say “YES”to more things. You never know what you will get out of it. I sometimes think about who I would be if I would not have taken this position at St. Anne’s. I have a whole new perspective about teaching and who I want to be as a future teacher… I have been inspired by real teachers who believed in me and who will have impacted my future students.
Thank you St. Anne Catholic School.