1.1 Hello. My name is Cherie' Hocevar. I am a non-traditional
student at the young age of 37 and my major is social sciences
with a minor in secondary education. I have known that I
wanted to teach since high school but it has just taken a while for
me to complete college classes. I am looking forward to
teaching because I generally enjoy children, educating, and I
have a vested interest in the future in which the future is the
nation's current students. As a (future) teacher, I hope to be a
positive role model and create life-long learners.
1.1.1 Elementary School
188.8.131.52.1 I attended kindergarten at Snow Heights elementary and then moved to Watauga Elementary for
grades 1 thru 5. My schooling was typical of a public school student in the 1980's. I was taught reading,
writing, math, science, social studies, music, and physical education. There was not a separate art class in
elementary, it was incorporated during teaching subjects. During 1st and 2nd grade, I received therapy
(provided by the school) for a speech impediment. The impediment caused terrible anxiety when it came
to learning how to read and especially reading aloud. I can still remember my first grade teacher
demanding that I repeat reading aloud over and over until "I got it right." My 3rd grade teacher was
phenomenal. I can't remember her name, but I remember how she made me feel. She was the first
teacher that made me feel valued and encouraged..
184.108.40.206.1.1.1 Class Connection
220.127.116.11.18.104.22.168 "“Teaching is intellectual and ethical work....It takes a brain and a heart.” (Ayers 2001) William Ayers
challenges teachers to see teaching as a humanizing enterprise rather than labeling students for their
deficits. Ayers says that teaching this way takes a great deal of courage, but by doing this the teachers
become students of their students and create greater opportunities for real learning. (p. 136) This article
relates to my first grade experience in that yes, my teacher had a brain, but was lacking in heart. Had she
looked at me as a student with capacities, skills, and aspirations instead of labeling me as a “slow reader”
with a speech impediment, I most likely would have improved more and had less anxiety in learning.
22.214.171.124.126.96.36.199.1 Middle School
188.8.131.52.184.108.40.206.1.1.1 I attended Fossil Hill Middle School for 6th, 7th, and 8th grade. Aside from core classes of language arts, history,
math, and science, I was able to take electives. My electives were athletics, band, typing (on a typewriter), a
career exploration class, Spanish, and a life skills class. My favorite classes were athletics, Spanish, and life skills.
I had different teachers/coaches for each of those classes and they were all great teachers. By great I mean,
encouraging, compassionate about their curriculum, and they challenged students to learn more. Middle school
was challenging at times trying adjust from the vastly different elementary environment to middle school
environment as well as socially as this is when “cliques” began forming and bullying appeared. Middle school was
an awkward time socially, physically, and emotionally for me. However, being an adult on the other side, I can see
the uniqueness of middle school students since my son is in the 8th grade.
220.127.116.11.18.104.22.168.22.214.171.124 Class Connection
126.96.36.199.188.8.131.52.184.108.40.206.1 During middle school, I took a life skills class. The class taught us how to be
leaders, work together as a team, and to be a compliment to society. Because it
was an elective class, there were students of all levels. Coach Smith, the teacher
for this class had us work in a group setting the whole semester. For grades
we would turn in one group project. This method of instruction correlates with
Oakes (1985) idea of cooperative learning. Oakes suggests that cooperative
learning occurs when teachers have students work together toward a group
goal with a single product. (pg. 210) Oakes suggests that students working
together have increased academic achievement, a greater positive attitude
towards instructional activities, and enhanced interpersonal relationships. (pg.
211) From my experience with this type of learning, we did experience those
outcomes mentioned by Oakes in that particular class over the semester.
220.127.116.11.18.104.22.168.22.214.171.124.1.1 High School
126.96.36.199.188.8.131.52.184.108.40.206.220.127.116.11 Due to divorce, I attended two different high schools. For 9th grade I attended Keller
H.S. I rode the bus to and from school as it was 12 miles from my house. This was the
only high school in the district at that time. I enjoyed my 9th grade year. I met lifelong
friends and participated in track. I attended Richland H.S. for 10th -12th grade. At both
schools, I took core classes and many electives. The electives were my favorite classes.
Socially, high school was a better experience than middle school even with having to
change schools. An issue we had at Richland H.S was that our mascot was a “rebel”
and our school flag was the confederate flag, which was upsetting too many. During
my senior year, we voted to change to a less offensive school flag. It was an
interesting experience. One regret I have regarding high school is lack of knowledge
about programs they offered. Had I known about the “Future Teachers of America”
program I could have participated in it.
18.104.22.168.22.214.171.124.126.96.36.199.188.8.131.52.1.1 Class Connection
184.108.40.206.220.127.116.11.18.104.22.168.22.214.171.124.1.1.1 James Conant (1959) had several ideas regarding the process of high school education. One
of his recommendations for required programs (classes) for all students laid the foundation
for my high school education plan. Conant said that all students should take 4 years of
English, 3-4 years of Social Studies, and at least 1 year of math and science. (pg. 8) Conant’s
plan was designed in 1959 and by the time I attended high school, Conant’s plan was still the
foundation, but the plan had additional requirements. For example, I was required to take 3
years of science and math instead of the 1 required that Conant suggested. Also, Conant
recommended homerooms as a daily requirement to instill a “sense of community”. (pg. 11)
While I did have homerooms in high school, we only attended homeroom a couple of times
126.96.36.199.188.8.131.52.184.108.40.206.220.127.116.11.18.104.22.168.1 Overall, my schooling was a satisfactory experience. There were a few challenges,
but for the most part the positive outweighed the negative. My mother thought
education was important, but there were not conversations regarding the
importance of education and doing well in school while growing up. There were
also not any discussions about me attending college after high school. In fact, my
cousin who graduated 1 year prior to me in 1995 was the first in my family to
attend college and graduate. As a (future) teacher I plan to encourage students
to really engage and take responsibility in their education as well as create a
plan for their future.