From Student to Teacher : A Reflection on My Experiences at LVA

When I first started at Lehigh Valley Academy, I was unsure what to expect.

smemmon1I was starting high school in a new place with new faces. However over the course of my four years at LVA I found a community. A community filled with peers and teachers who became mentors to all students. My teachers encouraged and guided me to strive for my best and challenged me to aim higher. Those mentors have now become my colleagues who still inspire me as a teacher.

smemmon2Being new to LVA, the IB program was something I had not heard of before. As I dove deeper into my high school experience, I went through the Diploma Program. Those who joined me on that journey know it is not for the faint of heart. It is a challenging, rigorous program that requires students to be thinkers, inquirers, and leaders in all aspects of their community. The DP program, while rigorous and testing, gave me opportunities to work with other students and teachers at LVA. Many of my fellow classmates and I worked with elementary and middle school students in afterschool programs or tutoring sessions.

After graduating from LVA,  I went to West Chester University to experience life after high school. The preparation I received in the IB program helped me adjust to the workload and pace in my freshman year. When I graduated last May with a dual degree in Elementary and Special Education, I knew I wanted to teach but I did not know which grade or type of classroom I wanted to Class of 2012work in. Little did I know, the perfect fit for my first teaching position was my old school. In my first year as an Instructional Support Teacher I have been able to learn from my colleagues. I have observed the unique teaching methods of how to teach core subjects and units of inquiry.

Due to going through the IB program, I am able to reflect as a former student and look at IB from a teacher’s perspective. As a former LVA student, I am proud to have gone through such a challenging and rigorous program and moreover, as a teacher I see the truly unique qualities found in the IB program.

This unique and rewarding program allows students to look at their community and world around them. Students make global connections and explore units of inquiry giving them hands on experiences while learning and exploring these topics.

Above all, when I first returned to LVA, it did not feel like I was coming back to my alma mater; it felt more like coming home to a community of staff and students who take pride in what is taught, learned, and accomplished everyday.

Ms. Sarah Memon

Instructional Support Teacher, Lehigh Valley Academy RCS

Lehigh Valley Academy Alumni