Sarah Rose: Consolidating learning and catering to students' differences
After 20 years of teaching, Sarah Rose of Alex Sanger Preparatory is just as passionate about teaching as when she first started out. Sarah dedicates herself to ensuring that no child is left behind and nurtures her students’ growth on an individual level.
Sarah Rose started out as a psychology major, attaining a BA in Psychology, however after moving to Dallas, she launched herself into teaching through the Dallas AC program in 2002. Over the years, she’s taught grades 4, 5 and 6, and loves teaching math because of its concreteness and measurability, which allows her to check in with how students are progressing and fix any issues in a straightforward way.
As a teacher, Sarah always keeps up-to-date with the latest technological innovations and uses technology to enhance the way she teaches and presents. She even has her own website, which contains math games, resources and videos. Differentiation and formative assessment are also important in Sarah’s classroom and allow her insight into how each of her students is learning and whether they need any extra help.
Games also have a strong presence in Sarah’s classroom, and she says that interactive elements get her students excited about and involved in their learning. “In the classroom, we have a lot of board games and digital games that I’ve made - the more fun you make teaching, the more they forget they are learning!”
While Sarah says many teachers in Dallas follow the lesson cycle of presenting a problem and then tackling it with the ‘I do, you do, we do’ technique, Sarah has her own technique. She prefers to give her students lots of practice with individual skills and does a lot of scaffolding, whereby she breaks down a problem to each individual skill set and gets her students to practice in repetition to master it. Sarah says that this ensures that she catches students when they struggle with a certain step and highlights where there might need to be intervention. She also employs spiraling throughout her homework and assignments and analyses her students’ tests to identify key areas that need attention.
For Sarah, what matters the most to her about teaching is seeing her students grow, and witnessing their success brings her great joy.