Sadie Rehm

Earlham College MAT student

About Me

Howdy! I'm from a small town in Ohio called Yellow Springs. I went to Earlham for undergrad, and graduated last May (a year ago) with a major in Spanish and a minor in Outdoor Education. I love history, literature, and theory, as well. My younger brother, Gabe, will be entering his final year at Earlham for undergrad this coming year. I really enjoy spending time outdoors, cooking, baking bread and bagels, and listening to/playing music. I play guitar, banjo, and sort of sing. This past summer, I backpacked 1200 miles of the Pacific Crest Trail out west. For the past year I took a break from school and lived in Ann Arbor, Michigan. I worked at a rock climbing gym. Here I am with my hiking partners on top of Half Dome in Yosemite last summer:
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My Journey to Teaching

Although I enjoyed school and learning throughout my childhood, my drive to teach was awakened during college. During adolescence, school had felt like a validation of my ability to take tests and be organized - but my experience at Earlham completely altered my perspective on meaningful education. I grew as a reader, writer, and critical thinker as classes and professors pushed me to deeply engage with ideas and texts. I really fell in love with learning at that point. I began to think: why was my experience in college so vastly different than in high school? Couldn't it be better? Much of what I learned at Earlham made me critical of the educational system, which can often perpetuate problematic histories and discourses. But I also realized the immense impact of education in creating change. As I became more involved in the Outdoor Education program at Earlham and took on increasing leadership roles, I found that I really enjoyed combining group facilitation with teaching. It felt very fulfilling and energizing. And now, here I am! I'm really looking forward to the program, and especially finding ways to integrate critical thinking, history, and experiential education into a Spanish curriculum.

Current Musings on the Texts

"... in lecture halls, seminar rooms, field settings, and even electronic classrooms - the places where most people receive most of their formal education - teachers possess the power to create conditions that can help students learn a great deal - or keep them from learning much at all. Teaching is the intentional act of creating those conditions, and good teaching requires that we understand the inner sources of both the intent and the act." (Palmer, 2007, pg. 7)


This quote really stuck out to me in The Courage to Teach because it draws attention to the intentionality involved in teaching. One of the most impactful experiences of my life was participating in August Wilderness, an orientation program at Earlham where I lived in community with other students, student leaders, and professors for 26 days of backpacking and academic coursework in Utah. As a participant my first year and later a leader of the trip, I was struck by how the experience was made especially meaningful because of its strong intentionality in community and personal growth. The program was set up with common principles and group intentions, mentorship, and opportunities for creative academic and skills-based projects. As a student, I was supported in my transition into college as the instructors asked provocative questions and guided me in exploring my past, present, and future. I left with a stronger sense of self and community. In Outdoor Ed., it is often easy to see the intentionality in creating conditions for growth and learning -- now, how might I bring that intentionality into a classroom?

Bibliography

Palmer, P. (2007). The courage to teach: Exploring the inner landscape of a teacher's life. San Fransisco, CA: John Wiley & Sons.