Aubree Cantrall (4th Quarter, 2005)

by Josh Barsch on August 20, 2010

4th Quarter, 2005
Teacher Scholarship Winner
Aubree Cantrall

“A teacher affects eternity: he can never tell where his influence stops.”; “These wise words, spoken by Henry Adams, embody my view of teaching. To me, teaching is about affecting change. It’s about inspiring others to want to learn for themselves and awakening in them the desire to change.”

A Portion of Aubree’s Winning Essay:

Aubree Cantrall

“A teacher affects eternity: he can never tell where his influence stops.” These wise words, spoken by Henry Adams, embody my view of teaching. To me, teaching is about affecting change. It’s about inspiring others to want to learn for themselves and awakening in them the desire to change.

I am very aware that the profession of teaching does not pay particularly well, and I understand that it is a very challenging career. I have heard from many trusted teachers how draining it is to spend all day being energetic, positive and encouraging to students and still having enough energy to go home and be just as encouraging, uplifting and helpful to your family. I know that some days will not be fun; they will be physically, emotionally and mentally challenging, for I have seen the attitudes children can have. I know that teaching is an ongoing learning experience, for with each new class comes new personalities and new challenges. Besides dealing with students, teachers also have to work hard to keep up with changes in their subject, and they have to be well prepared. Teachers must live a morally excellent life, in order to be an example to students. I have been informed of all of these downsides, yet I still long to teach and am up for the challenge.

I feel as if teaching is my calling in life. The money (or lack of) does not matter to me; I want to make a difference, even if that means I am poor. In fact, I would not dedicate my life to another career even if it were worth millions a year. I cannot imagine another career that comes close to the rewards that teachers have the joy of experiencing. I view the profession as completely rewarding and worth the sacrifice of time, effort and hard work just to see the light in a child’s eyes as he or she finally understands a concept or begins to change for the better. I know that life is very short, so I want to spend it helping others. I have tried both styles of life: selfishly spending time on myself and spending time volunteering. I have found that nothing compares to the feeling I have when I’m helping, leading and teaching, even if I never receive thanks.

Though most are unaware, everyone is a teacher. Due to the influence I have on my younger sister, I learned from a very young age that I am a teacher, and I want to be a good one. My actions teach everyone around me. I have tried to be an excellent teacher to my peers, staying away from drugs, alcohol, and sex, while focusing on God, school, and family. My friends frequently come to me for advice, so I have had the experience of helping others and counseling them. I have formally taught in church, Vacation Bible School, Backyard Bible Club, and I student-taught a 7th grade class for awhile. I do not take this privilege of teaching for granted, though. I understand what a responsibility teachers have to be an example to their students. In fact, the Bible states that teachers are judged more strictly.


Though I know realistically that I am unable to change the ways of the world by myself, my goal as a teacher is to inspire individual people to change so that they may be able to influence their sphere of the world. I want to start a chain of change that spreads as far as the students are willing to take it. Sometimes, all it takes is one person to change lives and positively affect the world. I want to be that one person. I want to be the type of teacher that helps students emerge from their comfort zone. Even in my young age, I have seen so many of my peers with massive potential fail to use their talents because of fear, laziness, or both. I want to discover other’s potential and encourage them to use it. So many lost kids just need encouragement and love. I want to enthusiastically teach English so that I can invigorate students with my love for English, for volunteering and for life. Besides just teaching in the classroom, I want to teach my students by example by being involved in community work with them through the school. I want to show students that school is not about a GPA, like I thought it was for so many years, but about applying what you learn. We are so privileged to have the opportunity to be educated, so I want students to get the most out of school and not take it for granted. I’m tired of seeing half-hearted, tired teachers coming to school every day just to get a paycheck. I have had many of those types of teachers in my life, and that is actually part of the reason I want to become a teacher. Every student needs an inspiring leader to incite the goals, determination and encouragement he or she needs to succeed.

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