There’s a quote by Maya Angelou which states, “I did then what I knew how to do. Now that I know better, I do better.”
Now, this can apply to many things–academic and otherwise, which is probably why I love it so much. I think back to the beginning of my yoga practice; something I discovered after finishing a collegiate-level water polo career. I was reluctant to try yoga, considering it some hippie, new-age nonsense that would barely make me break a sweat. Time and patience, though, have a way of transforming one’s perspective. My reluctance grew into daily practice, which developed into a profound love, which led me to pursue and receive my yoga teacher certification. At the tail end of yoga teacher training, I discovered a duel passion for being both student and teacher; I realized I wanted to make education my career, and thus applied for UCI’s M.A.T. program.
Through the M.A.T. and my student teaching experiences, I have realized the powerful combination of an open mind, creativity, and fearlessness in the face of making mistakes (which, I learned, will happen). I believe in the necessity of humbling oneself, in the advantage of collaboration, and the importance of reflection. In all I do, I must consider the needs of my students. And in addition to considering my students’ needs, I have the responsibility of helping them uncover their strengths.
I am a student, and I am a teacher. Without being the former, I cannot successfully be the latter. It is not until I know better that I will do better.