By Jo Mathis/AAPS District News Editor
Becca Robinson teaches a third/fourth combination class at Bach Elementary School. She grew up in Huntington Woods, a small city near the Detroit Zoo. An only child, she was raised by her “amazing” mother and Bubbie (grandmother). Robinson grew up loving sports and played soccer, volleyball, basketball, and rugby. She attended Tamarack Camps for 23 years as a camper, staff, supervisor, and senior staff member.
Robinson graduated from Berkley High School in 2005 and went on to attend Eastern Michigan University, where she was a member of the EMU water polo team. At EMU, she earned a degree in elementary education with a major in language arts and a minor in math, and a master’s degree in urban/diversity education.
Robinson lives in Ann Arbor and enjoys playing in an adult soccer league during the week. She is also a coach for Girls on the Run and loves to spend time outdoors. She also enjoys spending quality time with her friends and family, especially her two godsons, Noah and Aidan.
She says she loves working at Bach and has enjoyed getting to know the Bach School community.
What was always written on your report card in grade school?
When I was in elementary school, my teachers usually wrote that I was well behaved, paid attention, and was always willing to help others.
When you recall your first year of teaching, what memories stand out?
One of the memories that stands out to me was when I started in my first classroom in a different school district it did not have a rug for gathering. The students and I would have morning meeting on the tile floor every day. One day my mother surprised all of us with an amazing delivery of a brand new giant rug. I can still remember the look in their eyes when the custodian rolled it in and how excited they were to have something that was special and unique for them. They took such good care of it and loved it as much as I did. That was one of my favorite first-year teacher moments.
What inspired you to become a teacher?
My first grade teacher, Judy Bauer, inspired me to want to become a teacher. When I was in first grade, my mom was very ill and had to go out of state to a hospital for a week. Every morning when I came into Mrs. Bauer’s room there was a card waiting for me in my desk from her telling me that everything would be okay. She was such a kind and caring teacher that I knew from the age of six that I wanted to be just like Mrs. Bauer when I grew up.
What’s the happiest part of your day?
The happiest part of my day is the morning. I love the time before school when I get to collaborate and check in with my colleagues. We are constantly laughing and supporting each other. I also love the first time I get to see my students in the morning. My classroom faces the playground, so I always have a few students that come knock on the window before school to say hello. Then, once the bell rings I am able to greet my students outside and individually welcome them into our classroom every morning. Sometimes there are hugs given, a few fist bumps and high fives, but always an individual greeting to each of my students.
Apps you can’t live without:
Freckle is our favorite classroom app at the current moment.
What do you know about teaching now that you wish you’d known that first year?
Don’t sweat the small stuff and that every day is a chance at a fresh start. Also, lean on your colleagues when you are having struggles because nine times out of ten, they have experienced what you are going through and can help support you.
How do you show school spirit?
Aside from always wearing Bach spirit wear on Fridays, I often try to attend our family nights throughout the year. I am also one of the school’s coaches for our Girls on the Run team. I love being able to meet more students from the school in this program and to see the impact it makes on our participants.
What is the most rewarding part of teaching?
The relationships with both students and colleagues. There is an unspoken bond between fellow teachers that is hard to explain to an outsider. We are in the trenches together day after day and experience things that no one else could understand unless you are an educator. The rich relationships that I am able to create with my students also transcend time. It is a highlight of my day to get a hug or email from a former student and be able to check in on them and continue building the relationship even when they leave my classroom.
What do you wish everyone realized about the work of a teacher?
The work of a teacher is never over. We go home and reflect on the day and are constantly worrying about the well being of each of our students. On the weekends, we spend our time planning innovative lessons and buying extra pairs of gloves for those students that don’t have any or lost them on the playground that week. The love we have for our students runs deep. We celebrate the successes and work through the challenges, all with a smile on our face and love in our hearts.
How do you recharge?
I do a few different things to recharge. I love to sleep in on the weekends and spend time with family and friends. I especially enjoy recharging by visiting my best friend and two adorable godsons, Noah and Aidan.
How do you spend your summers?
I love to be outside as much as I can during the summer. I used to attend Tamarack Camps from the time I was six until I spent my last summer there in 2014 as a supervisor of the camp’s trip to Alaska. I love to hike and be in nature, as well as spending lots of time in the water. I also spend my summers catching up with friends and family that I don’t get to spend that much time with during the school year.
What’s most exciting about your professional life right now? Your personal life?
I recently graduated with my master’s degree in Urban/Diversity Education from Eastern Michigan University. I am excited to implement the things I have learned in my program, as well as enjoying the downtime of not taking any classes for the first time in years.