TEACHER FEATURE: Nadine Shields-Alcalde
Degrees and Certifications:
Elementary Teacher Grade 3
William H. Holmes Elementary School
Number of Years in the District:
Name of College(s) and Degrees Held:
Iona College Class of ’97 - Bachelor of Science in Education
Lehman College Class of ’01 - Master of Science in Education
What do you love most about your role within the Mount Vernon City School District and why?
What do I love most about being a teacher in the Mount Vernon School District? It is that feeling of coming home. As an alumnus of this school district, I am proud to call myself a knight. It is amazing to show up to work each day, knowing that the doors I am entering, are the doors I entered as an elementary student. As a teacher, I am proud to be able to give back to the community that shaped and supported me into being the person I am today.
What aspect of your job inspires you the most and why?
The aspect of my job that inspires me the most is being able to get to know my students. Interacting with so many personalities can be exhausting, but it is also one of the most rewarding experiences I encounter daily. Young children are so resilient and full of life. When you show them that they are valued and their opinion and well-being matter, they respond by showing up and working to their full potential. That in itself is all the reward I need.
What has been the biggest lesson you have learned in your years of teaching?
As a teacher, the biggest lesson I have learned is the importance of being patient. No two students are alike, it might take one student a little longer to reach the same point as their peers. But it is important to provide students with the opportunities they need to achieve their goal.
What lesson(s) or values do you strive to teach your students? Please explain.
The lessons I strive to teach my students includes being creative thinkers and to believe in their full potential. A classroom is a springboard that will help to shape their future, but they must take control of what they learn. They must hold themselves accountable for their learning. I encourage my students to utilize the skills they learned and apply it to their lives. I remind them that it is not about who is the best behaved or who has the best grades. What’s important is that you are present and work to your full potential.