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So you want to be a high school teacher? Read this.

Madelyn Mays

You know them. You love them (sometimes). You spend eight hours of the day with them.

High School Teachers.

It takes a certain kind of person to be a high school teacher. Patience, kindness, and willingness are all extremely important virtues to have. We have previously talked to a college professor, but teaching high school students for seven plus hours a day holds a completely different dynamic, and calls for a completely different skill set.

Before you turn your head up at the idea of being a high school teacher, let’s hear from a professional on what her experience with teaching is. Kim Block is a history teacher here at Petoskey High School. She teaches many different history classes, AP Government, Economics and even a college level class for early college students. Because of her diversity in the classes she teaches and her overall love for teaching, I decided she would be the perfect fit for an interview.

“Working with kids is very invigorating,” says Block. She explains that, in teaching you are always growing, learning and there is always something to improve on. She mentions how she simply loves learning and that is the best part about her job, that she gets to learn and grow everyday. “Proving that you’re doing your job,” Block says, explaining the worst part about her career. “Things like filling out forms or writing down goals and then proving that you’ve achieved those goals.” This, she says is the hardest part about teaching.

Going to college is not necessary for all careers, but in the case of teaching, you must have a degree. “I went through four years of undergraduate and I was an American Culture Major, which really means I could work at a museum or become a professor,” explains Block on her college education. “To get my teaching degree I went back for a full calendar year, did my student teaching, got my masters degree, all in one.” She then goes on to explain how every five years she has to get six more credits. ”So you’re just constantly going to school,” she says. “Even though I am close to retirement, I can’t keep my job unless I get credits by next year,” Block explains. The schooling is a very important part of a career, but the passion is what is most crucial.

When choosing a career, you have to have a passion and a desire to do your job. Without this, it will feel like a waste of your life. “I was a reluctant one,” explains Block. “I did not what to what my parents had done, which they were both trained in education.” Block explains how her boyfriend at the time said had a lot of talent as a teacher and she should pursue it. She was still against the idea, until she realized that school was the place for her. “I found out that when I was outside of school I didn’t really know how to survive outside of school, because I had grown up in school all my life.” “I went back to school because that was my culture.” Even though Mrs. Block was unsure of her decision to become a teacher, she has now realized that it was the right choice for her.

Obviously, in teaching, kids are one of the most important part. “I would, if you like students,” Block says, explaining what kind of person would be good teacher. “You have to realize you’re the only one who loves history, none of your kids love history.” “Unless you like them, it’s a lonely and frustrating process. Mrs. Block explained to me how she came to love the students. At first, her passion was in the history. Now, towards the end of her career, she loves teaching it and she loves the students.

Kim Block took her passion for history, and made it fun for her kids, so they have a chance to be passionate and enthusiastic about it as well. Teaching is a tough job, and teachers like Block believe having a passion for the students is the most crucial aspect. If you love kids, this will be a great career for you.

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