My name is Megan Ricardo and I live in Virginia Beach but attend Old Dominion University in Norfolk. I am studying to get a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Ceramics and Art Education. Art is an important part in my life and hope to teach children in ways they would not learn in a regular curriculum classroom, but in an art classroom. Besides attending school I work two jobs currently and even though the money is good I do not work for it! I happened to fall into my jobs and would never change them for the world. My first job I have had for five years and I wish to actually own it one day. I work at Potts n' Paints ceramic study in Virginia Beach where children and families can come and make ceramics and have to keep forever. This is a link to our site... As much as I like to work here on the weekends my weekday job is ten times better. During the week I work at a private preschool: Bellamy Manor School, which is a part of the four Manor Schools located throughout Virginia Beach and Chesapeake.
We are not a daycare, we work so hard to provide an extremely stimulating curriculum and activities so the children are fully engaged in learning while at school. We have strict programs the children can participate in such as dance, art, gymnastics, spanish, and an intense speech course for our struggling talkers. I am an afternoon 4-year old teacher and had never expected these children to impact my life two school years ago when I took over what is now my classroom from another teacher. We are fortunate to be part of a foreign association so we are on a list when foreign children and their families move to America, there child can attend our school. It has made me so fascinated to see these children and see them start to learn English. Nothing makes me happier than my class full of 16 children who say they love school. I feel as though my life was predestined in every way from falling into these jobs at an early age thanks to people knowing people and even my social life. I have a wonderful boyfriend who I met early in life and can honestly say I knew he was for me the first time he kicked a soccer ball to me. He is my number one supporter and we hope to live in Chesapeake next year when he graduates from, you guessed it, odu with a Bachelor in Finance.
I could never ask for more in my life and I feel I will give back to everybody who gave to me through teaching. This is something very near and dear to my heart and something I believe I was really born to do!
My belief of how a teacher should teach and how education should be handled was formed at a young age. My brother has Tourette Syndrome and borders Obsessive Compulsive Disorder, however he is one of the smartest people you will meet. Going into Kindergarten he could read on a Third Grade level, yet was asked to repeat Kindergarten on account of 26 referrals on his behavior record. My parents soon found out these disorders. He has had such a negative experience with school and once a young child who loved to learn is now a young adult who hates school and everything it represents. Unfortunately sending him to public schools we should not have asked them to change too much for him, but they have done nothing to hep him in any way. Seeing him go through this and meeting my 4 year olds who are at the age where they tell all, even what you did not need to know, and seeing what they face at home has lead me to the way I feel about teaching. "Every child has a story," one of my mentors in education once told me and upon reflection of this I realized what she meant. Every child comes to school every day with something else happening around them, don't we? We as educators have no idea what they are going through, and then again maybe we do. It is our responsibility to take a step back from SOLs being shoved down our throats and think what we can do to individually teach each and every one of these children. Not all children will understand right away and not all children will grasp the material in the same way. We need to have enough skills to tap into each child and recognize what we can do in order to fulfill our promise to teach them. As a teacher, a person should be compassionate, yet firm. An effective teacher needs to bring every resource available to the classroom and really put their mind and heart into each lesson. Who's fault is it when a child fails in life, too many times it is not their own. A teacher needs to do everything possible in their power to set this child up for success. A teacher should be willing to take time out of their busy lives to spend needed time with struggling students. A teacher needs to build a relationship with his or her students so the classroom becomes a place of respect and trust where learning can happen and the child can feel safe. Perhaps in bad case scenario the child may be able to deal with hardships at home through the warmth of the teacher and class, giving them hope in their life and goals for their future. I am not fully sure how to describe my passion for education and my philosophy on it, but I hope this was enough to show you and to inspire you. I live and breathe this in my life and will be the first one to just soak in other's passion for it. This is something I truly believe in, I believe in the students I will teach and the whole purpose of teaching.