Meet Ms. Tera McGee | Capital Teaching Resident | Grow Academy
Ms. Tera McGee is a current resident in KIPP DC’s Capital Teaching Residency and March’s Teacher Spotlight! Ms. McGee is a member of the Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, and she obtained her degree in history from New Jersey City University. She immediately felt inspired to further pursue her passion in education after coming across the opportunity to become a resident with KIPP DC’s Capital Teaching Residency. We recently sat down with the aspiring teacher to learn more about her journey in education.
What led to your interest in pursuing a career in education?
“I’ve always been into school. Ever since I can remember. I even remember my Pre-K teacher. That’s how deep I was into education. I always told myself that when I get older, I am going to be a teacher. I was always willing to help and always the leader.
I’ve always been passionate about the field and the desire to help people, especially children, as far as I can remember. I feel like teachers are more than just teachers, because we have such a heavy impact that extends beyond the classroom.”
You mentioned that upon graduating you came across KIPP DC’s Capital Teaching Residency. Can you elaborate on what led you to want to work at KIPP DC?
“I was looking for an institution that aligned with my values. I grew up going to urban schools with Black and Brown students, so I wanted to help those who looked like me, talked like me, and had the same background.
I thought it was an awesome opportunity, especially the training aspect of it all. We may not have the formal schooling, but if we have the drive and passion behind it, they will help you become a highly effective teacher with the support, feedback, and course work done in the program.”
How would you describe the support you receive from your school leader as someone aiming to become a teacher at KIPP DC?
“Our vice principal wants us all to succeed, and not only that but those at KIPP who also run the program. The work that is given to us is aligned with the teaching that is given in the classroom.”
What kind of morning routine do you have to get ready for class?
“I was never one to use an alarm clock to wake up! I wake up on time every single morning. I wake up with so much joy and eager to come to work. I also listen to a lot of music to propel me to get out the door. I also don’t drink coffee. People always tell me I have so much energy, and it’s never from coffee. It’s just the kind of person I am! Sometimes I meditate to get myself ready for a long day of work but other than that, I’m up and out.”
What is your favorite thing about teaching students?
“My favorite thing would be watching the growth from day one to where they are now. I enjoy that and the relationships that I form with my students. I love them wholeheartedly and greet them with a smile every single day. If anything, they are going to know they are loved.”
Can you tell me about an exciting learning experience you have had so far since starting your residency?
“Every day is unique and different! No two days have been the same so far. I love it because it keeps me on my toes! It’s been such a fun ride so far, and I don’t want to get off.”
If you could pass on any wisdom to your students, what would you share with them?
“I would say to strive to be the best you. Always put your best foot forward. Reach for your goals and believe in yourself. Show grit and lead with love in everything you do.”
KIPP DC is proud to recognize Ms. McGee as this month’s Teacher Spotlight, and we look forward to her many positive contributions to the education of our students.