NYC Teaching Academy at CSS

Claire Xu, Reporter

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This year we welcomed several teachers from the NYC Teaching Academy to work with us for a semester. The program was first introduced by Principle Nightengale and many professors are participating in this program.

Several teachers were approached by Principal Nightengale to participate in the program,” said Professor Lennon. “I myself chose to participate because I believe it is part of my professional duty to help train young people who want to be educators. I also want to be an educational leader and training new teachers allows me to practice my own leadership skills.”

This program had benefited the students as well.

“I was counting on getting great student teachers – and I did!” said Professor Kovac. “So, now instead of one teacher in the room, our Geometry students have multiple teachers available to help them.  I benefit because explaining throughout the day to the Pre-Service teachers allows me to examine my practice and methods.”

The student-teachers are also enjoying their time at CSS.

“There’s very little that I have not enjoyed about my time at CSS,” explained Professor Thomas, student-teacher for ELA. “The best part however is clearly working with the 12th grade students every day. It is so much fun to work with them and just generally be around them. I have so much respect for all of them and truly believe every single one of them can be successful and happy with whatever they choose to do in life. I really would just want to make sure that the students, staff, and administration know how grateful I am for my time in this school. Everyone has treated me with so much respect, and I could not be happier to be placed here as part of my program.”

Their journeys to become a teacher is also really interesting. Professor Wu, a math student teacher, chose to become a teacher simply because she enjoys teaching.

“I had some teaching experience in preschool for a few years after I came to this country,” said Wu. “I was a tutor for math department at CCNY while I was a student at CCNY expect this semester since I am busy with student teaching. During summer 2017, I was a volunteer in co-teaching a class at MS131, which is a middle school in Chinatown. I enjoy seeing students figure out a difficult problem.”

While Professor Thomas said it happened by accident.

“I was working for a private tutoring company that eventually placed me in a K-8 school in Newark, NJ full-time for two years,” said Thomas. “A high school in Newark came around recruiting the 8th graders I was working with at the time. On a whim, I asked them if they had any teaching positions open, and they actually did. I got hired a few weeks later and became a 12th grade social studies teacher for the next two years. I loved it so much that I decided to stick with it.”

“I have taught in other schools, and all my experiences have been different in many ways,” said Professor Kaur, math student teacher. “CSS has been one of the best schools I have taught in. From day one, I have felt welcomed from the administration at CSS and from our students. Everyone is here to help. They say ‘we are one big family, and we are all in it together’. I am thankful for my coach, Brandi Kovac. She is an inspiring teacher. I am learning a lot from her as a teacher and I enjoy assisting her. The students I teach at CSS have been wonderful; as they learn, I am learning too and growing along with them. I appreciate the respectful and safe environment CSS holds. My experience at CSS has been amazing. I had the opportunity to teach a whole class, co-teach and tutor the students at CSS. I am going onto Graduate School and continuing my teacher education, and I want CSS to know that I am thankful for giving me an experience to remember. Thank you for being apart of my growth as an educator!

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