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April Sub of the Month

April Sub of the Month name, green background

Introducing our April Sub of the Month, Xavier Landrum! To learn more about why Xavier decided to give substitute teaching a try, read our short interview with him below.

Tell us a bit about yourself.

My name is Xavier. I am fairly new to Colorado Springs as an adult and I can say that I sincerely do enjoy the mountains from time to time. In my spare time I enjoy playing basketball, Xbox, of course, socializing with close friends, and exploring the State of Colorado!

Why did you decide to be a substitute teacher?

Well, originally I wanted to teach English overseas. I actually have an advisor from the International TEFL Academy, (based out of Chicago) who consistently sends me emails about enrolling. I would love the opportunity to be an international English instructor so that I can learn and be a part of a new culture! Personally, I want to travel to Japan to teach English. I love everything about the culture and have always wanted to go. I figured that being a substitute would provide an exceptional experience where I could learn about the flow of a school and classroom and what to expect as a teacher. After substituting for this semester, I feel more motivated to go overseas and teach English while learning a new culture.

What do you love most about substitute teaching?

One thing I love most about substitute teaching is the warm welcomes I receive from staff. They are always really generous and kind to me upon arrival, even if they don’t recognize me. I also love the reactions on students faces. Most of the grade school students always tell me in excitement, “YOU ARE THE FIRST BOY TEACHER I HAVE EVER HAD!”. Some of the middle school students ask how old I am. When I tell them that I am only 25, they generally say “You really look 17 or 18 though… I hope I look as young as you do when I’m your age!” It really does put a smile on my face knowing that, while I am not a full time teacher yet, I am still providing the students, the staff and the school with as much help as I can possibly give while leaving positive feelings and demonstrating how to be a great role model.

Do you have any favorite grades or subjects you like to teach and why?

Yes, I love all the students, but if I did have to choose, it would be Middle School. I can somewhat relate to them, outside of being a substitute teacher, when it comes to sports, music, gaming, etc. I have learned that students feel more at ease whenever they have a teacher that can relate to them. There have been several times when a student would randomly talk to me about their personal life and maybe ask for advice, and knowing I can provide great life values or advice for their future makes me feel great.

If you had to give any advice to a new substitute teacher, what would it be?

I would definitely tell him/her to be themselves. Always follow the teacher’s requests while subbing, but don’t try to be just a substitute! Every time you approach a school, whether they recognize you or not, be the best version of yourself. Everyday, someone new will see you, whether it is a student or staff member, and you always want to leave a great first impression. Don’t try to please one student, one class, one staff member or one school. Try to please them all! 

 

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