Samantha White, a teacher at Richard Lagow Elementary School, loves her job because she has the privilege of inspiring students to become who they want to be.
White became a teacher to help shape the world of tomorrow for a better future that she, as well as others, can live in.
Meet a Top 100 Teacher, a Hub feature that talks with top educators in Dallas ISD, caught up with White in her classroom at Lagow Elementary.
What motivates/inspires you?
I am motivated by the “lightbulb” moments that I spark through daily interactions with my students. When they arrive at the beginning of the year, I have very high expectations that seem almost intangible in their mindset. As the year progresses, to see them speak with such confidence and connect beginning and mid-year concepts like a puzzle to master a piece of themselves that they didn’t know was there all along is the greatest inspiration as a teacher.
Tell us about your most memorable teaching moment?
My most memorable moment was seeing one of my former students at Spruce High School as he prepared for a feeder pattern pep rally as his senior year came to an end. His sense of pride in calling my name with his uniform on to let me know that he had applied to local colleges was the best reciprocation for all the home visits and tutorial sessions that we had during his fifth-grade school year. That moment taught me that although teaching a child ends at the end of the academic calendar, the true end result of my educational labor extends far beyond it.
What one bit of advice would you give a college education major about what it takes to be a successful teacher?
Remain focused on your purpose and never let the desire to become greater burn out. Pass on your knowledge and don’t be afraid to acquire more.
What do you do differently now than you did when you first started teaching?
I dedicate more time to being spiritually, physically, and mentally equipped to handle the day to day occurrences. Running on “E” won’t help anyone!
Complete this sentence. What surprises me most about my students is….
Their love to come to my class even though I’m referred to as the “strict” teacher.