The Role Model
You teach because it is a way that you can benefit kids like you. You come from a similar background, and it's important that you be there in the ways that people were for me. You want the kids you teach to see people who look like them thriving, learning, and supporting them in their own progress.
You value: voice, community, purpose
Back to School tips:
Role Models value their students’ identities and seek to reflect these throughout their classroom and instruction. Here are some low-hanging ways that you can demonstrate that you see and value the many identities in your classroom.
Where you are is a reflection of who you are. Decorate your classroom in a way that reflects your identity and the identities of your students. You will all feel most comfortable when you are in your element.
Start the year with books that will grab your students attention and show them that the world of writing can represent some parts of their own experiences.
meet a BPS Role Model
Stefani is School Climate Manager at the Edwards Middle School. In this role, she supports the school’s transition to the use of restorative practices. Restorative practices are used to repair relationships and build a healthy community rather than solely discipline.
How she came to teaching: Stefani comes from a family of educators, so teaching has always been part of her nature. As a child as young as seven, she remembers bringing math lessons to her friends in the neighborhood, wanting them to have the same knowledge that she did.
What keeps her motivated: After a few years working in Central Office, Stefani is glad to be back in a school, working directly with students and able to see the impact of her work. She is nourished by the stories of her students, learning about their lives and experiences.
How she’s trying to grow: Stefani is in the final stage of her PhD program, conducting research and writing her dissertation on racism and the narrative of African-American boys. She learns by doing and likes to close the loop (learn-do-reflect), so completing this academic work in conversation with students is exciting to her.
What she seeks to nurture in her students: Stefani seeks community and wants her students to also feel connected to people with whom they can share experiences and perspectives.