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Beyond My Expectations

Emily Philips| March 19, 2019

As a teacher at Covenant, I have been transformed both professionally and spiritually in ways I could never have imagined. I feel that I am becoming the very best teacher I can be, and over time this experience has come to be one of the greatest blessings of my life. I do not know if I could find this growth opportunity at any other school.

When I first started teaching at Covenant, I expected to grow spiritually, but I didn’t know how much I would grow professionally. I had completed student teaching and taught summer school at a prestigious public high school that was known to have rigorous standards. It was my impression that those types of public schools would produce the best teachers. However, at Covenant I have been given the opportunity to develop professionally beyond all of my expectations. I have learned God-honoring and effective ways to discipline from many of the gifted faculty members at this school. I have also learned how to teach math conceptually, and in the process I have found that students retain the concepts better, can apply them more easily, and find greater delight in the learning process. It is the way I believe we are created to learn math! I am immensely grateful for the way Sharon Weldy (principal and former math teacher) mentored me during my first year. She spent a great deal of time with me— pouring wisdom into me and sharing her past experiences regarding conceptual math pedagogy.

My spiritual growth has also amazed me. Through our faculty prayer every morning, we are reminded to center ourselves on God. Together we recognize that He is in control, and we desperately depend on Him each day. We pray and care for each other, and I find this to be an integral, life-giving part of our community. It has become a discipline that I have come to cherish, and it has transformed my heart in turn. How many people can say they feel spiritually nourished at work? I know that it is a magnificent privilege and truly a gift from the Lord to be teaching at a school like this.

During my initial job search, I applied to 13 different public high schools and a single private, Christian middle school. Against the odds, God led me to that one. Through my experience, I have found that I am uniquely designed for this calling. I feel so fulfilled in my work. It is amazing to feel both professional and spiritual growth as I use the skills God has given me to bless others. My heart finds so much joy and peace in this place.

About the Author: Mrs. Phillips is a graduate of Wheaton College with a Bachelor of Science in Mathematics and a Master of Arts in Teaching in Secondary Education.

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