When people find out I am an elementary education major, they become inquisitive.
I have gotten everything from, “Why do you write for The Daily Eastern News?” to “You do not seem like the teaching type,” to even a look of dismissal.
After all, those who cannot do, teach, right?
For me, this could not be further from the truth. I have the ACT and the grades to pursue whichever career I wish to. I am not someone who chose teaching just because my IQ was not high enough to become a scientist or a doctor.
Rather, I chose this profession because I love learning and seeing that glimmer in children’s eyes when they gain understanding of a topic that previously eluded them. Those “aha” moments excite me just as much as they excite the learners.
I need be able to learn and grow constantly. Being in a classroom provides me with the opportunity to handle new challenges every day and discover new questions to learn the answers to.
As much as I love to learn and grow, I also love to write. I need to write almost as desperately as we all need air to breathe. This might be a bit dramatic, but you get the point. Writing is an integral part of who I am. Currently, the The Daily Eastern News provides an outlet for a different side of my writing. That being said, I fully intend to write books of all sorts of fiction and explore my writing voice while here in many other ways as well.
This may seem like quite the stretch. It would be easier to become a high school English and journalism teacher instead of choosing elementary education and having to go the extra mile to continue writing.
It seems like that career choice would be best for me on the surface. The convenience of that path is clear, but sometimes the most convenient thing is not always best.
By doing this I would miss out on the chance to inspire young learners who may just be getting to the crucial point where they are deciding whether or not they are going to emphasize learning in their lives.
Throughout a child’s education, it is important for them to know there is a person who cares about them and wants to see them succeed. Being able to be there for my students when they are near the beginning of their educational careers is more important to me than my education just being convenient.
Plus, becoming a great writer is not something that can be taught in a class. You learn it by reading a wide variety of materials, analyzing the world around you and creating a story that is uniquely yours.
This may take me a lifetime to perfect and I will certainly have experiences along the way that challenge my life philosophy, but the growth in the end will be worth it.
The fact is, I am a teacher and a writer and so much more that I do not have time to explore in the confines of this short opinions piece.
My choices are intentional; I do not wander through life. Although my goals could change in the future, my aspirations are no less noble because I choose to pursue professions which are not usually associated with one another.
College is associated with an exploration of identity. My exploration and growth will go past this setting and hopefully never stop.
Chrissy Miller can be reached at 581-2812 or [email protected]