Can you tell us about yourself?
Hi, my name is Gabriel Dannemiller. I'm a fourth-grade teacher at Butler elementary school in the clear fork Valley, local school district. I work in Butler, Ohio, and I actually, this is my third year at Butler.
Why did you start a career in education?
I started a career in education because I care about kids and I hope that's the reason all teachers have started a career in education. I also started a career in education because I was inspired by some of my teachers to become a teacher. They showed me that education can be a very, fun job.
If you could have any other job what would it be and why?
If I could have another job, I probably would be a software engineer. I say this because I've always loved computers and technology, and I have a pretty good understanding of them. And I've actually dabbled a little bit in programming and I like it. So if I could have picked a second career, probably would have been in programming.
How are kids different now than 30 years ago?
I don't really think that kids are very much different from 30 years ago. Granted I would have been two 30 years ago, but I don't think much has changed 30 years ago about kids and stills. They still desire to be loved and cared for. And that's the most important thing eating has changed a little bit over 30 years ago
How is teaching different now than 30 years ago?
I think one of the biggest things that are probably different from 30 years ago is as a teacher, I now have to keep the kids' attention. I now have to try and compete with the fact that they are constantly being bombarded with things technology-wise their phones, their computers, their video games, and so to try and keep their attention, to help them to, you know, focus in a lesson. I really have to work hard to make it stick because their attention it's hard to keep their attention focused on what you're trying to teach. So you have to be inventive and creative to come up with new ways to keep their attention on the important lesson that you are trying to teach. I think that's the biggest difference from 30 years ago.
What would you tell someone who wants to become a teacher?
I think what I would tell someone that's going to enter teaching now is that the job has lots of challenges. You're going to be thinking about your job constantly. You're going to be required to do a lot of work, even outside your normal expected hours. And there's going to be times you're going to be very frustrated, but with all those things comes satisfaction, the satisfaction that you are truly helping people. And not only that, but you get to see it firsthand the development, of kids growing and working to become adults in society. And that is a huge thing. Sometimes you'll go weeks without a moment of real, uh, and moment of real satisfaction, of seeing the effect that you're having. Sometimes you may even go years, but those moments of satisfaction, when a student comes and tells you, Hey, thank you for what you did. I really appreciate it. Or a principal coming to you and saying, I see a good job you're doing or a parent saying, I appreciate what you've been doing for my child. That makes it all worthwhile. And so I would say only get into teaching if you really care about kids and you're willing to put up with a lot of stuff that may be annoying.
What is one thing you would change to help kids learn better?
I think one thing I would change to help kids learn better would probably be cutting down class sizes so that each teacher only has a smaller number of kids. When a teacher has a smaller number of kids, they can focus their effort better on each child. They can spend more time doing one on one, work with students, and helping them help advance them much better than if they're in a large group.