The student news site of Los Altos High School in Los Altos, California

The Talon

The student news site of Los Altos High School in Los Altos, California

The Talon

The student news site of Los Altos High School in Los Altos, California

The Talon

Student Teacher Observes Classes

For the past few weeks, Sairah Khan has been observing math teacher Carol Evans to primarily discover what makes an effective teacher.

Sairah is a student who is currently taking the Science, Technology, Engineering, Math and Medicine (STEMM) path at Foothill College. Last semester, Sairah observed AP Biology, Biology Honors, Biology and Special Education Biology at Mountain View High School for three months.

This semester, her advisor at Foothill recommended she observe a different teacher in a different class than she did last semester. Thus, Khan is observing AP Calculus BC, AP Statistics, and Algebra 2 Honors, all taught by Mrs. Evans. All of this observing is part of her desire to learn more about children’s education, and how education is impacted in post conflict states, after a child has experienced a form of trauma.

“I am primarily interested in children’s education in post-conflict states as a part of larger public health projects, as one of my interests is Maternal & Child Health,” Sairah Khan said.

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Khan believes the relationship between teachers and their students is very similar to the relationship between public health coordinators and communities.

“Being a teacher is not an entirely top-down initiative; you have to work with your students and vice versa to get them farther—and when you’re working with 100+ teenagers on a daily basis like Mrs. Evans does, it is not a cakewalk,” Khan said. “The same goes for public health: in public health, you work with communities who know their afflictions best. Education is hard work, but so far, it is work I enjoy.”

In the future, Khan hopes to pursue a Master’s in Public Health, and eventually become a global health epidemiologist.

“I am also interested in ‘teaching’ in the traditional sense, especially in helping to restructure childrens’ education systems with local, respected teachers in post-conflict states as a part of larger global health projects,” Khan said.

So far, Khan has been impressed by Evans’s teaching tactics.

“I stayed long enough during one observation to see all the students who flock to her classroom during Tutorial and Lunch, indicating that Mrs. Evans is good at providing spaces for students to study, play chess, and seek math help,” Khan said. “I also appreciate her firm belief that any student can do well, even if the student does not think so…she is an excellent (and invested) teacher who has got classroom management down pat.”

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