In honor of Teacher Appreciation Week, City Year sites all across the country are recognizing the hard work and dedication that America’s teachers put forth each and every day. City Year San Jose/Silicon Valley will be featuring a blog post each day this week in which we will thank a teacher or administrator at one of our service partner schools for inspiring and supporting us as we serve.
Today, Corps Member Yvette Licea will recognize Katie Wyatt, a fifth grade teacher at Mildred Goss Elementary School.
“Yo! Yo! Yo!” chants the teacher.
“ YO! What’s up?!” responds the class.
Standing in front of 34 fifth grade students is no easy task, and to engage them in the classroom setting is even a bigger challenge. Katie Wyatt from Mildred Goss Elementary School in San Jose, CA takes on this challenge every day with style.
Her classroom is controlled fun full of learning experiences. She makes every lesson into a game. She has them chanting, singing and acting every minute possible, and the kids do it proudly with a smile. Not only that, she’s not afraid to be hip as shown in the fact that every morning she has them sing Nas’s bridge of “I know I can, be what I wanna be.”
She has them perform skits to vocabulary words, something she calls “Boston Theater” which they absolutely enjoy. Her many creative voices when she reads keeps students engaged and hanging onto her every word.
The greatest part of all is that the students are learning and retaining the information she teaches. They positively participate and perform the task that is at hand. And for those who are not grasping the material covered, Ms. Wyatt readily makes herself available for those students and reminds them that she is there to do so.
She takes advantage of every opportunity each day to remind the students that she cares not only about their progress in school, but about their well being as children, which shows in the mutual relationship that she has with each student in her classroom. She opens herself up so that they can also open up to her, therefore creating a positive atmosphere throughout the entire classroom.
It’s safe to say that Ms. Wyatt is my role model when it comes to teaching. Getting to know her since my start at Goss has truly been amazing. She’s honest and outgoing, which is refreshing to see in a teacher. The children love and adore her; and they can’t even imagine having another teacher for the fifth grade.
She is funny and animated, providing everyone with the comic relief that a stressful education job can bring, and everyone truly appreciates it. Goss has truly found a precious gem in Ms. Wyatt and I hope that she continues to touch the lives of those around her for a long time to come.
Thank you Ms. Wyatt for being the person and educator that you are, and for always striving to learn more!
Yvette Licea, Corps Member CYSJ