This week’s feature is Julie Porter. Julie Porter has been teaching for 26 years. She teaches in the dual immersion program at Wasatch Elementary and has a passion for reading which she passes on to her students. Here is what Julie wrote about her reason for teaching:

Why I Teach…

by Julie Porter

. . .because I get to laugh every day. My students see the world in ways that I do not. I love how they embrace the world around them and express it to me. I laugh over their jokes, their funny sayings and their love for life.

. . . because I get smiles, hugs and “high-fives” every day. Who wouldn’t feel happy coming to work where kids hug you and are happy to see you? Where love notes are written to you and where you are told you are simply “the best”?

. . . because I can let my creativity soar. Even with mandates from school principals, the district or state, I get to choose how I will teach each lesson. I know my students and I know what it is that will catch their attention and create a meaningful learning experience. (Essay continued below video)

. . . because I get to read stories every day. If you never have had the experience of laughing with a class of first graders while reading a book about a snake who wants to play catch or pirates that won’t sit on babies—your are missing out! Or the times we cry over a boy who gave away his Chinese New Year money to a man who has no shoes or the death of a beloved pet. Or the “scary” suspense of whether Jack will be eaten by the Giant or not knowing what made the stick break in the woods as four children listen in a boxcar. Books are my friends and I get to introduce them to new children to enjoy and become their friends, too, each and every year.

. . . because I am teaching children to read. I have been helping children learn how to read for 28 years. The joy of giving a child a high-five after they finish reading out loud their first sentence, their first early reader, their first chapter book is incredible. Life is about reading–whether for entertainment or knowledge and I love knowing that I have helped nearly 1,000 children along this path in my career as a first grade teacher.

. . . because I am always curious, just like my students. I love learning about new places, cultures and languages right along with my students.

Teaching young children is a physically demanding task but my life has been blessed in so many ways by having daily associations with my young learners. They keep me young, keep me fun, keep me creative.

Couldn’t ask for a better life!

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