Senior Caroline Watkins visits former Central student’s classroom for “Invitation to Teach”

Caroline Watkins, senior, participates in the Invitation to Teach program offered through the Family and Consumer Science Department. Watkins regularly attends Ruth Remkus’ classroom at Maercker Elementary School in Westmont.  Remkus is a fomer Invitation to Teach student from Central and now is a mentor teacher to students in the program.

Ms. Dawn Oler, coordinator of the program, teaches the two-period class for seniors who have an interest in
working with children. These students participate in local schools four days a week.  The students learn what it takes to work with children in the school environment.

“There are eight area schools and you shadow from gym to music to special education and this isn’t just a class for females,” Oler said.

High school seniors go out to learn the process of teaching. They take the class for a semester and gain insight about becoming a teacher, pediatrician, or psychologist.

“Students tend to love this class. They get to learn so much about the classroom and how it functions. We also take a class field trip downtown to a public school and volunteer there for a day; it’s a great experience,” Oler said.

Remkus teaches special education students at Maercker School. Watkins shadows her four days a week learning how to plan lessons, attend meetings, incorporate a guest speaker, and teach a lesson on her own.

“I would describe my overall experience as very beneficial. At first I wasn’t sure if teaching was the right career choice for me, but after taking this class, it is clear to me that special education is where I’m headed and I’m so grateful for Mrs. Remkus for letting me shadow her. She truly is an inspiration,” Watkins said.