Students Become Teachers During Teacher Induction Ceremony

Students Become Teachers During Teacher Induction Ceremony

Graduating Teachers

Fifteen graduating education majors officially entered the teaching profession during the annual Teacher Induction Ceremony in Kuhne Auditorium on Friday, May 12. Cinda Ginn, the Thornwell Charter School Teacher of the Year, delivered this year’s address to the soon-to-be-graduates and teachers. 

Classroom Heroes

Ginn, who began teaching special education in 1999, relayed some of her stories since teaching at Thornwell Charter School over the last three years. She also offered words of encouragement as the new teachers embark on their careers. 

“You are my personal heroes because you are going out to educate our country’s future,” Ginn said. “It is a tough, often thankless job, but it is so necessary for our kids today to have bright, energetic teachers to have as role models. You are needed in every school.”

Ginn spoke about the challenges that teachers face and warned the new teachers that the daily demands of teaching will leave them “mentally, emotionally and physically drained.”

“You will look at the clock at 8:00 pm and ask, ‘Is it too early to go to bed?’” she said. But Ginn shared tips with the new teachers in the form of the acronym “PRESBY” to help them persevere. 

Put People Over Paperwork 

Ginn said teachers will always have papers to grade, meetings to attend, and lessons to write. 

“And all that work will get done,” she said. “But your students need you every day. They need to know you are there for them.”

Ginn shared the story about one of her students who asks her for a pencil every morning. Ginn said the student doesn’t really just need a pencil: He needs “some reassurance, someone he can talk to about his worries and successes.”

“So, look and listen,” Ginn said. “Put your students over your paperwork. Get to know them and once you do, foster that relationship. You will be a light to them. You may even become the reason they come to school.” 

Remember Your Resources

Ginn said that new teachers’ best resources are their fellow teachers. 

“Beg, borrow and steal ideas and things they have to give away,” she said.

“Talk to them. Vent to them. And when you do, they will become your tribe and your ‘counselors.’ I consider my coworkers not only my friends, but my confidants.”

Exercise and Engage 

Ginn shared that new teachers need to fit self-care into their busy schedules to stay healthy.

“Get outside and walk, run, skip. Go to the gym. Do yoga,” she said. “Keep a  journal. Write about your wins, your defeats, and everything in between.

“Write about things that worked in the classroom and things that didn’t so you can go back to them the next year and use your experience to help you grow as a teacher.”

Ginn also encouraged the graduating educators to incorporate writing into the classroom regardless of the subjects they plan to teach. 

Stick to a Routine 

“This will be impossible some days,” Ginn admitted, “because another thing you need to do as a teacher is monitor and adjust always.”

Still, Ginn recommends sticking to a classroom routine and enforcing classroom rules. 

“When possible, there is comfort in routine, and students need that,” Ginn said. “They aren’t comfortable with what’s new or different, and they really don’t like it when rules change.”

Be the Light

Ginn encouraged new teachers to be the light for their students and fellow teachers. She quoted Matthew 5:14-16: “You are the light of the world – like a city on a hilltop that cannot be hidden. No one lights a lamp and then puts it under a basket. Instead, the lamp is placed on a lampstand where it gives light to everyone.”

Ginn confessed that it is easy to become discouraged in the teaching profession. She said the new teachers can serve as a source of positivity for their fellow teachers and for their students as well. 

She said she often hears her students calling themselves “dumb or stupid” and reminds them that “they’re some of the smartest students I’ve ever known.” 

“They are their own worst critics and they need to be told that they are amazing,” Ginn said.

“And when they do something well, praise them out loud so everyone can hear. Tell other teachers and their parents.”

Ginn said she told one of her classes that they were her honors class because of how well they were doing on reading and writing assignments.

“I could almost see them sit up a little straighter in their chairs,” she said. “A little compliment will go a long way, so stay positive and be the light.”

You Will Be Their Heroes

“You will be their heroes,” Ginn told the graduating seniors.

“You will be amazing. You’ve had a top-notch education here at PC. You have been taught how to teach from this amazing education department and you have the world at your fingertips.” 

The Students Become Teachers 

The 15 graduating education majors recited the Oath For Graduating Educators after Ginn’s inspirational address. During the ritual, the new teachers pledged to bring honor to the  teaching profession, stated their dedication to the profession, and formally accepted their “obligation to improve the general condition of humanity, their responsibility to advance knowledge and cooperation, and their duty to promote the competence of their students.”

The education majors include: 

  • Kate Bazemore (Sylvania, Ga)
  • Jacob Brasseur (Lexington, S.C.)
  • Keith Boyd (Chester, S.C.)
  • Angel Cooke (Camden, S.C.)
  • Blanton Cox (Pawleys Island, S.C.)
  • Kendall Goldfarb (Longwood, S.C.)
  • Elizabeth Grier (Greenville, S.C.)
  • Abbiegail Hudson (Gray Court, S.C.)
  • Mallorie Jaeger (Newberry, S.C.)
  • Dessa Jones (Mauldin, S.C.)  
  • Kiersten Price (Gilbert, S.C.)
  • Hannah Ryder  (Travelers Rest, S.C.)
  • Olivia Sadorf (Chapin, S.C.) 
  • Hailey Sanders (Lancaster, S.C.) 
  • Hannah Schuetz (Cary, S.C.)
  • Brendan Shaw (Charleston, S.C.)