Education and Human Sciences, College of (CEHS)


Date of this Version

Spring 5-2018


Reflecting upon my personal experiences teaching mathematics to English Language Learners (ELL) in a public high school in Lincoln, Nebraska, this essay largely focuses on the time I spent as the only Accelerated Math teacher in my school building. From 2012 – 2017, I taught three different subjects at this high school: Advanced Algebra, Algebra, and Accelerated Math. This essay highlights why I chose to become a math and ELL teacher, as well as the challenges, issues, struggles, and successes I experienced during my time teaching. I focus on the challenges I faced teaching students who did not share my native language and discuss how I learned to assess their mathematical histories because of placement test inaccuracies. Recounting how I structured my class to prepare my students from drastically different backgrounds for a mainstream Algebra classroom, I utilize my own personal experiences and stories of students, outlining what they taught me, how I grew as a teacher due to their time in my classroom, and the memories I hold dear since leaving the field.