The Globe Newspaper Camp Lejeune, NC
Camp Lejeune | March 12, 2018
This week our featured teacher is Betty Smith, who teaches 5th graders at Bitz Intermediate School aboard Marine Corps Base Camp Lejeune. Smith has been teaching at Bitz for 12 years, but she has a total of 28 years of experience in the educational field.
Smith graduated with an Associate in Science degree from Mount Olive College and a Bachelors and Masters degree in Elementary Education from East Carolina University.
Q. What encouraged you to pursue your job as an educator?
A. I love to see children learn. It is such a thrill to see the expression on their face when they understand new information.
Q. What encouraged you to pursue education within your specific age level/curriculum?
A. I like to work with elementary age children. I like how they are excited about school and eager to learn new things.
Q. What is your main classroom philosophy?
A. “HOPE”- Have Only Positive Expectations. If you don’t think you can do it, then you won’t. Everyone can learn and it is my goal to make sure they achieve their personal best.
Q. What is a lesson you have learned from your students?
A. I learned that students really enjoy participating in debates. They like to take a side on an issue and defend their choice.
Q. What is your favorite part of being an educator?
A. My favorite part is the actual teaching of the material. I enjoy working with the students and seeing their growth.
Q. What advice would you like to give to new educators?
A. My advice is to enjoy teaching. There will be days when everything seems to go wrong. The great thing in teaching is each day is a new day and no two days are alike, so you will never get bored.
Q. What are three words that would describe your life outside of the classroom? (Hobbies, interests, etc.)
A. I’m a reader, beach lover and traveler.
Q. What is a favorite memory from your teaching career?
A. My favorite memory is when a former student, who had graduated from high school, came back to see me. She told me that she decided to become a teacher because of me.
Q. What advice would you like to give to a parent of a 5th grader?
A. Your child is growing up and becoming more independent, however, they would still love for you to read with them.
Q. What changes would you like to see implemented in the school system within the next five years?
A. I would love to see even less time spent on assessments and more time spent actively engaged in learning.
Q. What are the biggest challenges you face as an educator in a military town?
A. My biggest challenge is students moving during the school year. I get to know them and their families and I really don’t want them to leave.
Q. Is there anything else you’d like to share about being an educator?
A. The hardest day of the year is the last day of school. You get so attached to the students and their families that you don’t want them to move on to the next grade.