My learning process started the very first day of kindergarten in Newcastle, WY. Unlike the rest of my classmates I did not attend preschool so I didn’t know anyone at all. To top everything off I also didn’t speak a single word of English. My first language is Spanish, and in Newcastle, WY, neither the students nor the teachers could speak Spanish. Luckily though I remember being a very motivated learner and always tried my hardest to learn the new language. I would like to say that it didn’t take long for me to learn the language but I was mute for about half a school year just trying to listen to other students and putting their words and actions together. By the time I was in first grade I was pretty fluent in English, I kept learning throughout the years, never giving up on myself and I was so thankful to have the teachers I did. My biggest inspiration was my kindergarten teacher. She did everything she could so that I would never feel left out and that I would learn the language in the correct manner. She not once ever gave up on me and if it weren’t for her I don’t know if I would be where I am today. Along with other factors she is one of the reasons I decided to go into education.
As the years went on and I entered high school my passion for learning never changed. Not knowing if I would attend college or not I continued to get good grades every year and make my parents proud of me. They only attended school up until 6th grade before they had to go work to help the family, and education is not as important in Mexico as it is here. College had never been a topic we talked about at my house until I started high school and the school offered college credit courses, enough of them to even get an associate’s degree through Eastern Wyoming college. This was a huge opportunity that I couldn’t let slip through my hands so I went ahead and enrolled to start classes to get my degree the same year I would graduate from high school. I was so determined to get that degree and help my parents out financially. It wasn’t until my sophomore year of high school that I officially decided I would further my education and pursue a career in education. So now I wasn’t just trying to get two degrees at the same time, I was also keeping my grades up so that I could possibly get scholarships from my school to help me once I graduated. I knew this would be tough considering my class had a bunch of smart kids that I would have to keep up with to even be considered for a scholarship. By the end of my senior year I had obtained both degrees and started school with a lot of scholarships so my parents didn’t have to pay as much for my first year.
Coming from a family of 5 sisters and me being the oldest I didn’t want to disappoint my sisters, and I wanted them to have a good role model and someone to look up to and take after. Not only that, but I would be the first person in my entire family to attend college; so this was a huge deal for everyone. They all saw how much effort I had to put into what I was doing and just last year my sister graduated as a valedictorian of her high school class with an associate’s degree and a ton more scholarships than I had, which goes to show that I did become an inspiration to her. Not much has changed about me since the kindergarten me, I am still just as motivated and self-determined to keep learning as I was when I first started learning English as a kid.