#AlumLoVVe: Celebrating Pre-K Project Facilitator Sylvia Espinoza
As a Teach For America–Las Vegas Valley corps member, I learned to take everything one step at a time, personally and professionally. I never imagined I would graduate from college or graduate school, and as time has progressed, I realize I have been able to achieve huge milestones by choosing one step I felt comfortable with and moving forward in that direction. I am driven by my passion to provide equitable opportunities for all students to achieve a high-quality education, and I have found a place for that passion in a pre-K classroom.
I love working in pre-K because we focus our attention toward the development of a child as a whole person by embracing our students’ emotional and social growth as much as academic objectives. Within a pre-K program, family engagement is a critical requirement. I so enjoy getting to know my students and their families on a deeper level, as well as working together to achieve our collective goals. Through my experiences, I have seen that focusing on building trust with the individuals you are working with can have monumental impacts, and I prioritize being honest and operating with integrity.
After four years in the classroom, I transitioned to my current role as a pre-K Project Facilitator. I work with 130 teachers and assistants at the Zoom Schools in Clark County by facilitating professional development sessions, conducting classroom observations, and providing on-site coaching. Being a leader isn’t something that did not always come easy to me, but I understand now that being comfortable with the uncomfortable is a facet of growing and I look forward to continually reflecting to best serve my community.
This is why I have begun the process of becoming a National Board Certified teacher. By becoming nationally certified, I am better able to evaluate my practice through the lens of nationally developed standards, which I will use to best serve my community. I want to be an asset in this effort to provide equitable educational opportunities for all our students. I feel that one of the best ways to be an asset is to act, reflect, make the necessary accommodations, and repeat, with the understanding that as our educational movement evolves, so must we.