Jessica Hoard is a first and second grade teacher at DCA. She graduated from Liberty University in Lynchburg, Virginia with a degree in Elementary Education. We sat down with Jessica and asked her to share her inspiration, favorite bible verse and more. Learn more about Jessica below.
What inspired you to become a teacher?
Looking back, I was fortunate enough to have teachers who took the time to get to know me, motivate me and take personal interest in my passions. I knew that if I was going to pursue my teaching degree, I wanted to be like those teachers that made a difference in my life. I actually ‘fell into teaching’ when I realized that I enjoyed being around children and when I noticed that I was able to form good relationships with them. I noticed that being around and helping children learn gave me a feeling of pride and importance and I truly felt like I was making a difference in their lives.
What do you see as the benefit to students in a Christian school vs. a public school?
I believe that there are many benefits to students in a Christian school vs. a public school. One of the main benefits is that we are able to meet the needs of the WHOLE child. We are able to do so because we meet each child’s social, intellectual, emotional, physical and spiritual needs. Inside of the school, we are allowed to teach God’s Word to the students. In math, reading, social studies and science we are able to show our students’ that all of these intertwine with God.
What excites you about teaching? What brings you joy in teaching?
One of the biggest things that excites me about teaching is the rewards that I gain from my students. One of the biggest rewards from teaching children is that I am helping shape them into who they will eventually become. I get to watch them grow and it excites me when I see them progress throughout the school year. I absolutely love working with children and get a lot of joy from teaching them. I can not put into words the joy that I receive from knowing that I am instilling a love of learning in my students. In my classroom, I believe each and every child has the potential to learn, lead, and love. I strive each day to communicate each child’s worth and potential so clearly that they are inspired to see it in themselves and in turn inspire others.
What is your favorite bible verse and why?
One of my favorite Bible verses is, “Like arrows in the hands of a warrior are children born in one’s youth.” (Psalm 127:4) This Bible verse is so important in my life because children are from the Lord. They are our arrows and we are the warriors. These arrows we help carve, mold, shape and balance to be able to journey through life beyond our reach. God will use these arrows in life. He will call these arrows to share His love with others in the world and to become His warriors. As a mother and teacher, this verse is so significant in my life because I am helping raise these arrows and it is such a blessing for this occupation to be my calling that the Lord has placed in my heart.
How do you incorporate God’s Word into the classroom?
In my classroom, I incorporate God’s Word throughout my lessons during the day. We pray during class, I incorporate Scripture in my classroom and our curriculum is faith-based. I make sure to show my students’ God through my actions as their teacher. I make sure I am serving God by my actions inside of the classroom. We lead by example, and I want my students’ going outside of the classroom and becoming leaders of God as well.
How do you create a nurturing environment for personal growth and development? How do you work with students to achieve this personal success?
In order for me to be able to create a nurturing environment for personal growth and development for my students inside of my classroom I get to know them personally, listen to my students’ and form positive relationships with my students and their families. I make sure that my students know that they matter in my classroom and that they make a difference in my life as well as outside of the classroom.