Kirkpatrick’s Day As A Student



Julia Kirkpatrick hanging out with student Miguel Hernandez. Kirkpatrick found her student shadowing very interesting.

Part 2 of 5:  Written by Julia Kirkpatrick, one of the teachers who shadowed students.

Tomorrow: Teacher Tim Roupp’s perspective.

Wednesday:  Michael Grubar’s perspective.

Thursday:  Student Emilee Pease’s perspective.

I shadowed Miguel Hernandez, a sophomore. I wanted to shadow him because he had a number of classes that I’ve always wanted to see– high level Spanish, Academic Lit, and AP US History.

I also wanted to shadow one of my own students so I get an idea of what their day is like and how much homework they are assigned outside of class.

Often teachers get into their own little bubbles and don’t stop to think about student coursework in other classes, so this day appealed to me to get that perspective. 

This was really funny when I got to be a student in my own class. To add to this level, my mother is a retired schoolteacher who substitutes for this district and she was my sub for the day. In short, I got to be a student in my own class, taught by my mother. It was the stuff of dreams– not aspirations or goal-type dreams, but weird dreams that you wake up from wondering what got into your head. 

I loved my day shadowing. I got to see so many of my other students in different classes and in different elements. One student who always seems a little shy to me was outgoing in Spanish– another student who takes a leadership role in my class was quiet and withdrawn in another.

I went into the day expecting to be a little bored, but in each of the classes I participated in, I was actively engaged by the teacher. I failed a science quiz, I shared a golden line, and I solved for algebraic square roots. I forgot that I love math! 

Altogether, the day was really fun and eye-opening. I’m grateful to Miguel for letting me shadow him, and I’m so grateful to be a part of a school where each teacher whose classroom I was in made me feel included, challenged, and seen.