Teaching Tomorrow’s Teachers


Kathryn Welch

Mrs. Lynch’s Teaching as a Profession 1 class enjoy s’mores on Halloween!

Kathryn Welch, Art Editor

Coffee County Central High School recently established Teaching as a Profession courses to encourage and inspire students to develop skills and assess career opportunities in the field of education.  

The Teaching as a Profession Level 1 course was instituted last school year by Mr. Skipper. 

The genesis of this program was an outcome of the shortage of educators in Tennessee  that resulted in a statewide demand for teachers. Following the inquiring year, Teaching as a Profession Level 2 and Work Based Learning (WBL) were instituted this school year. 

These courses, taught by Mrs. Abby Lynch, allow students interested in learning more about becoming a teacher or other career opportunities within the school system (E.g. counselor, librarian, speech-language pathologist, etc.) to develop and expand their skills and knowledge. 

The Level 1 course consists of the components of instruction, developing lesson plans, teacher observations, educational theorists, and presenting mini lessons within the classroom and within Mrs. Van Tries life skills class. 

The Level 2 course consists of the classroom management plan, developing unit plans, philosophy of teaching, full class lessons with Mrs. Van Tries life skills class, and mock interviews. 

The WBL course is an off campus class period that allows students to work in local classrooms at all levels. Students involved in this course take part in preparing lessons, assisting teachers, and tutoring students. 

Alise Clark, a senior involved in this program, shared her experiences regarding these courses.

“I have always thought I would like to become a teacher, but Teaching Pro. has given me an opportunity to explore the different aspects of a teaching career, and reassured me that this is the path I would like to pursue”

Clark started taking these courses last year when they were first offered at CCCHS. She spoke highly of Mrs. Lynch and her methods of preparing students with realistic expectations of what teaching will actually be like.

Clark commented on her admiration for Mrs. Lynch’s adamant attitudes toward implementing activities and assignments useful for students in their own classrooms.

She listed the many activities that have been covered within the class, “We made management plans, recorded different ways to handle behavioral issues in the classroom, brainstormed ideas about handling emergency situations in the classroom, listed expectations that we will hold for both ourselves and our students once we become teachers, made models of what our ideal classrooms would look like, and kept interactive notebooks containing lessons and ideas that will be useful references throughout college and our careers.”

She expanded further by included experiences she has had outside of the classroom through WBL. Through this program, Clark is able to leave school for the duration of 6th and 7th period to observe teachers at other Coffee County schools. She is currently “observing, assisting, and learning” from teachers at Hickerson Elementary, while interacting with students and administrators as well. 

“This class has prepared me both for continuing my education after high school and for a career in teaching, all while remaining the most enjoyable aspect of my high school career thus far.”

Mrs. Lynch shared her own insight as to why these classes are important: 

“We need more teachers. Students gain insight on all aspects of the career, not just what they see during a school day. Students have the opportunity to experience how fulfilling teaching can be.”

 Mrs. Lynch would also like to highlight a few activities that take place in her classes that encourage students to use their creativity. Students designed syllabi, bulletin boards, and prepared lessons directed toward life skills for Mrs. Van Tries’ class. 

Mrs. Lynch’s hope for this program is, “That I would inspire my students the way my grandmother inspired my pursuit of a career in education.”  

Ultimately, Clark shared the lasting impact these courses have had on her, “I’ll always have a soft spot for this class, and I am so grateful for this opportunity to participate in it!”