Here at iteach, we try to share the spotlight with our certified teachers. We’ve decided that we would like to show off some of our teachers who have gone through our program and are currently teaching. We want to highlight and celebrate their stories and accomplishments with you and other teachers. Our teachers come from all different walks of life and have had different professions before they became a teacher. They have put their time, dedication, and energy into their learning and have shown what teaching means to them. Iteach flourishes because our teachers flourish. Meet our teachers of today, who are changing the lives of students for tomorrow.
Meet Sherry Hochenedel. Sherry is a wife, a mother of 3, and is a 7th-grade Integrated Science teacher for Martin Luther King, Jr., Junior High School in Monroe, Louisiana. It was here in Louisiana, where she received her initial certification. Her favorite lesson/topic to teach is anything science related, but her favorite topic is physics. Her favorite books are anything Dan Brown has written because it is historically and scientifically based on factual places and references. She enjoys painting and doing home improvement projects. Sherry also volunteers by working ball games to help out at her school, picking up litter, and encourages others to help clean up the community.
Before teaching, Sherry was a trainer for the DHH Medicaid waiver programs. She taught registered social workers how to write effective plans of care for Office of Aging and Adult Services and for the Department of Citizens with Developmental Disabilities. She even taught 10-hour and 30-hour OSHA Construction Safety and Health classes in her spare time.
Sherry decided to become a teacher when her oldest son was taking his Praxis exams and was about to start student teaching. He encouraged her to follow her dreams because she had always planned to become a teacher. Her degree plan was originally General Science Education. Unfortunately, Sherry had to move to another state when her son was younger. To graduate on time, she was forced to take a new degree path, Behavioral Science. It wasn’t until then, she realized the state she moved to did not recognize a General Science or Composite Science Education as a degree. Her options were to either switch degree plans and graduate on time or pick only one science and practically start all over, extending herself another 2 years.
Sherry says one of her favorite things about being a teacher is being able to see the wonder and curiosity in her student’s faces when they are intrigued by the lesson. “I love seeing them get excited and want to join in the open discussion to agree or even to disagree with each other.”
Sherry chose iteach because it was affordable and flexible. “I was very pleased with how thorough it was and welcomed how challenging it was (I had not been in school for quite some time). With my oldest about to graduate college and my two youngest in high school, working full time plus some, I guess you are never too old to learn!”
As we conclude our Iteach Teacher of The Week, Sherry would like to share what she wants her students’ parents to know about her and her classroom. “I will never give up on your children. I will hold them to a high expectation and teach them to always question and seek answers for themselves. I have an open discussion classroom so questions and on-topic discussions are always allowed at the beginning of class and at the end of class (and a mailbox for anonymous questions for those who feel embarrassed or just don’t feel comfortable talking aloud) so there is never a reason any student should be unclear on anything. I am always willing to meet and work over to give additional support or guidance if needed. (I have even been to my students’ homes and have held tutor sessions at McDonald’s on the weekends.) I will never stop believing in my kids!”
Thank you, Sherry Hochenedel, for all your hard work in the community and in the classroom. Keep on teaching and thanks for being a part of iteach.