Cassie Walter teaches with a old teacher of hers.
Montclair High School senior Cassie Walter spent her senior option interning at Watchung Elementary School in a second grade classroom with one of her old teachers, Mrs. Blafer.
“I got the internship by sending an email to the principal of Watchung, Mr. Schmidt, asking him if I could work there,” explained Walter. “I made sure to list all the names of my old teachers so that I would be paired with a teacher that I knew. My old third grade teacher, Mrs. Blafer, ended up responding. She told me she’d love for me to come work with her and her third grade class.”
Cassie Walter had a long work day. She would get to work at 9:00 a.m., when school started, and would leave around 3:15 p.m. when the students left. Walter was fortunate enough, however, to be given a nice lunch break.
“My break was from 11:15 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. because that was when the kids had their electives, lunch and recess,” said Walter.
During her day, Walter was required to accomplish various tasks. “I graded homework and class work, helped kids with their work and assisted the teacher with any small tasks she needed accomplished,” explained Walter. “The kids also hatched chicks the day I started, so a good portion of my time was spent taking care of the chicks, which was really fun. On nice days, we would take the kids outside and sit in a circle and let the chicks run around. It was so cute.”
While her days were long, Walter enjoyed her time spent in Mrs. Blafer’s classroom.
“I really loved my senior option,” shared Walter. “It was really fun to just hang out with the kids all day. I think little kids are great; everything they say is just so funny, yet they don’t realize how funny it is.”
Cassie Walter additionally loved wandering the halls of her old school and being able to visit her old classrooms and see her old teachers.
“What was really cool was the kids actually found pictures of me back when I had their teacher and was raising chicks just like them,” said Walter.
Cassie Walter’s favorite part of her senior option was field day.
“Since we were outside playing games instead of in a classroom setting, I really got to chat with the kids, play with them and really get to know them, which was definitely a lot more fun than just helping them with their work,” explained Walter. “It really made me realize how awesome of a class they were and how lucky I was to have spent my senior option with them.”
This internship was extremely beneficial to Cassie Walter considering she sees herself possibly pursuing a career in education.
“I could definitely see myself being a teacher once I graduate from college,” said Cassie Walter. “As of now, I really want to do the Teach for America program, but I still do have a lot of time to decide what I want to do.”
This fall Cassie Walter will be attending Connecticut College in New London, Conn. where she plans to major in English and possibly minor in Education.