Jill Martin is a reading teacher for the Bondurant-Farrar Middle School. Jill attended the University of Northern Iowa and majored in Elementary and Middle School Education with a minor in Literacy.
“Being a teacher is a lot of work, but it can also be one of the most rewarding things in your life.”
Her first year as a teacher was a busy one; she coached volleyball and track while creating lessons. “I am lucky enough to be a part of a welcoming community, and my co-workers and administration made it easy for me to love my job.”
Jill knew she wanted to be a teacher ever since she was little. “When I was growing up, I always enjoyed babysitting for my parents’ friends and neighbors,” she said. She didn’t realize it was her passion until she started coaching athletics. Jill worked at basketball camps throughout high school and coached softball during the summer. This is when she realized her passion for coaching and teaching children. “I enjoyed watching them work hard and become successful at doing something they loved.”
Jill has only taught 8th grade, but enjoys the middle school age because they make her laugh every day. Middle School students are very independent, so she is able to challenge them.
Jill enjoys watching children learn and become successful. “It’s a great feeling to watch someone who is struggling, take responsibility for their learning and reach their goals,” she said.
The most challenging part of being a teacher for Jill is that the students can be very diverse. “You have to try and meet the needs of every single one; it’s challenging,” she said. “But it’s one of the things I love about my job.” Jill said the most surprising thing she has learned about teaching is that you never stop learning. “Although I am the teacher, I learn something new almost every day.”
Along with the challenges, the most tedious part for Jill is grading papers. She is a teacher to 115 students. “That’s a lot of papers.”
Jill’s most memorable teaching moment are the times when a student specifically thanks her for helping them. “Those are the moments that stick out,” she said. “It’s really rewarding watching the students improve and make progress.”
She wants to continue to help students reach their goals and watch them become successful students and citizens. Jill leaves me with this Andy Rooney quote, “Most of us end up with no more than five or six people who remember us. Teachers have thousands of people who remember them for the rest of their lives.”