GREENVILLE — Amy Schoen has been a teacher for more than 10 years.
“I love teaching,” she said. “I have the best job because I have the best of both worlds. I get to work with the pre-school kids, and the high school students that want to be teachers.”
During the September 21 Greenville City School District Board of Education meeting, Superintendent Doug Fries highlighted Career Technology Program, Careers with Children, instructor Schoen for being selected by Ohio School Boards Association (OSBA) to participate in the Capital Conference in the fall of 2017. The program and Schoen will be honored during the Southwest Region Annual Fall Meeting, October 12.
“The District is proud of your accomplishment and your dedication to your career path,” Fries said.
The Greenville High School (GHS) Careers with Children Program provides junior and senior students classroom instruction, practical training and personal growth opportunities. Through this combination, the students gain the skills and knowledge which make up a strong foundation for continuing their education in the early childhood area or to assume an entry level position in a childcare program. The Careers with Children students begin learning through the Greenville Learning Center, a preschool for children of ages three, four and five, located at GHS.
“Our program has blossomed because the high school students love what they do and people are seeing that,” Schoen said. “We started out this preschool seven years ago with six kids. Now we have 27, and there is a two-year waiting list.”
Schoen starts teaching her students with the preschool kids.
“We start with them because this is the best age to talk to – they are extremely honest and tell you more than you will ever want to know,” she said. “It’s a good age for my high school students to get comfortable talking with kids; asking open-ended questions, getting the kids to talk back and communicate.”
The high school students eventually have access, through the other Greenville schools, to children up to 12th grade. According to Schoen, Greenville’s Careers with Children Program is unique because the students work with kids hands-on, four-days-per-week. The other day is spent creating lesson plans and activities that meet the Ohio Department of Education standards, she said.
“We are the only high school in Darke County that offers this,” she said. “There are other schools with pre-schools in the county, but not that allow high school students an opportunity in which to work.”
Schoen said she has great high school students, such as senior Maddie Shepard, who plans on pursuing a career in elementary education.
“When we do our activities everyday, I like seeing the kids learn and I know I am helping them,” Shepard said. “They come in and don’t know the letter of their first name; and then they get it. We help them over and over again and see them blossom throughout the year. Then, they go off to kindergarten and they are little people. We are instilling knowledge in them, and it’s really cool helping them throughout the year and watching them grow up.”
“Amy is great,” Shepard added. “You can tell she cares about every single person and she puts the time into every single person. If you ask for her attention, you get it. Even if she has to spread it thin, over 27 people, she makes sure you get your individual attention because she thinks you deserve it.”
“This class is so much more than text books, grades and tests,” Schoen said. “The students learn so many life skills in here, such as: time management, being prompt, getting their work done on time and being professional. This is a business here. The parents pay for their children to be here. The students have to interact with the parents, which is scary for some of them. They learn so much more in here than just our standards. There are so many things I can’t teach them that they learn from being in this environment.”
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