Green Dot Celebrates Educators for World Teachers’ Day

At Green Dot Public Schools, we celebrate our teachers all year long, but World Teachers’ Day is an important chance to recognize them. It’s their commitment, enthusiasm, and passion that make all of our learning communities so special. In honor of World Teachers’ Day we asked our teachers one simple question about their careers in service: Why do you teach?

Here’s how they replied.

“I love watching my students have that light-bulb go off in their heads. That moment where something was difficult for them and all of a sudden it clicks. That’s what I love about teaching.”
Krystle Braxton, Ánimo James B. Taylor Charter Middle School 

I found that I loved teaching, I love interacting with these people who have a lot of big ideas. I love that I get to be a part of helping them actualize their dreams.”
Romel Unsdorfer, Ánimo Inglewood Charter High School

“There is a road to real satisfaction in what we’re doing, because our schools are serving the students who need it the most, using a model that has the potential for the most success.”
Nat Pickering, Ánimo Pat Brown Charter High School

“The people who were there for me either in college or high school, were a lot of my teachers. When I think about a lot of the people who have influenced me it was my teachers.”
Angelina Mendez, Bluff City High School 

“I feel my motivation is just seeing our students get to that point of understanding that they are bigger than what the world allows them to think that they are.”
LaShawnae Smith, Ánimo James B. Taylor Charter Middle School 

“I wake up every morning as a teacher, wanting to be the person I needed when I was a student,”
Ayrica Sawyer, Ánimo City of Champions Charter High School 

“I’ve wanted to be a teacher since I was a kid. You know how in kindergarten they ask kids, ‘What do you want to be when you grow up?’ I said ‘teacher.’ I've always had a fascination with learning and when I help others and I see their face light up when they understand something, that's what gets me. I loved math as a kid and I want to affect people in a way where they don't have to be scared of the subject and so I try to make it as welcoming as I possibly can while still challenging students.”
Kevin Castro, Ánimo Venice Charter High School 

“I had a teacher in high school, I believe he was the second black male teacher I ever had. I felt connected with him in a way that allowed me to take school more seriously and allowed me to see myself as intelligent. He made me feel like I could be a mathematician and that reimagined my reality as a professional going forward. That inspired me to want to do the same for others.”
Justin Dinnall, Kirby Middle School

“My goal is just to make sure my seniors have a plan, whether that's college, career, technical school, or whatever, I just want to ensure they are off to a great start in their adult lives.
Fred Copeland, Fairley High School

“Every day is a new day to learn and get better at what you do and an opportunity to reflect on the content and reflect on yourself, because the students really shape you.”
Carmen Leiva, Ánimo Watts College Preparatory Academy

“I strive to show students that knowing and developing their Spanish can be an academic advantage, whether it allows them to do well on the Advanced Placement Spanish test or enter the workforce as a bilingual speaker.”
Gabriel Borlant-Guertler, Ánimo Leadership Charter High School

“In this time of uncertainty, I want my students to understand that they've got a village.”
Anton Blakely, Ánimo Compton Charter School

“I know it's crucial for our students to feel comfortable in a math classroom, so whatever I have to do for them to feel comfortable, show up.”
Susana Amezcua, Ánimo Legacy Charter Middle School

“I think that when it comes to teaching, it's really about seeing students grow and improve. It's almost like a living work of art that you see develop—every day you're pouring something in.”
Anjali Mahadevia, Ánimo Ralph Bunche Charter High School

“I became a teacher because I didn't see a lot of teachers that look like me, a Latina, So I wanted to represent this in the math field. But now, what keeps me going is the students.”
Daisy Diaz, Oscar De La Hoya Ánimo Charter High School

Since my first year of teaching, no matter how hard it has become, it has to do with our students. You care for them. You’re there for them. That’s why I keep going.”
Itzel Reyes, Locke College Preparatory Academy

“It’s when students have that “a-ha” moment when they get it—or even when they had that moment where they got the problem wrong, but they know why they got it wrong. It  gives them a sense of empowerment. I love to see that, and I love to help build that with students.”
Charell Milton, Ánimo Legacy Charter Middle School

“I believe to live a meaningful life, you should leave the world in a better state than how you found this for the people that will inherit. And I found that teaching is one of the best ways for me to leave the world in a better way than how I found it. And I want my students to inherit a better world and be able to live in it competently.”
Sam Kottoor, Ánimo South Los Angeles Charter High School

“Teaching pushes me to invest myself because if I don't, if I'm not invested in it, and if I don't have the passion, this job is impossible. I have to be 100% in it, and no other job has ever pushed me to do that.”
Spencer Bray, Ánimo Westside Charter Middle School