Teacher speaks: An inside look

Tyler Wong, THO Editor

Across disciplines & departments, teachers at Northwood have cultivated unique relationships with the classes they teach and the students in them. A chance to share their experiences reveals a variety of new perspectives on what it means to be a teacher. 

Keonie Yu, Special Education

“It is hard because some schools have provided curriculum, but I do everything from scratch. A lot of times I split the class into different groups and lessons for each of them. It would be on a broad topic, such as tax, but if some students don’t know how to add, then I’m going to have a specific lesson with them where we add the tax to the grand total. Other students who can multiply and divide, I have a separate lesson for them. It’s impossible to create unique lessons for each and every one of the students, but I do my best to meet their skill level while also challenging them. When I see how much growth some students make, they stand out to me a lot.” 

Joey Cabrera, Humanities History, Girls Soccer

“During State of the Student, I dedicated the day to showing my students I cared about them. It’s really interesting to see how students show that back to me in terms of how they trust me and those are the students that make an impact for me. 

I think about the end of the year and I always gets happy because of summer, but I also get sad because I won’t get to be their teacher anymore—I’m not going to see them as often, all after I got used to seeing them, talking to them and learning about their day, and now with a whole new set of kids…If there was a way I could still maintain that relationship with them, that would be nice. It was a good set of kids to have for my first year. They had an impression on me.”

Leslie Roach, Principal

“My most memorable moment from this year was the first day of school when everybody came back and was around The Oak tree. Even though it was chaotic and weird, it was a symbol of people returning, even though we all had masks.” 

Whitney Tavlarides, Music Director

“Every single student I remember. Because once we’re here, it’s all one big family, and you don’t forget your family. Every single person, we are all emotionally connected and it doesn’t matter if it’s string orchestra or Jazz I, we are all connecting creatively, musically, and once you have that aesthetic experience with someone, you never forget that even though year after year, we’re still doing this. 

Both Mr. Case and I have the best job in the world; we hands-down fully believe that. It may be challenging and time-consuming but we both went through programs like this and we both see the value and equity in just how our programs truly make people and how important that is for everyone to experience at least once in their life. Our job is not only to make professional musicians, our job is to make students aware of how music programs and arts impact and add value to your life.”