College of Education

West Chester University

302 Recitation Hall
West Chester, PA 19383
Call: (610) 436-2321
Fax : (610) 436-3102

Literacy (Reading)

Video Transcript

From an early age, Una Martin had a strong interest in reading and in becoming an educator.  Una considers her elementary school principal as her first and best role model of a great teacher. She talks about the time she spent with her principal when she was just a little girl and how much she appreciated shadowing her and reading some of the newest novels she had laying around in her office. “She frequently invited me to shadow her as she executed her dismissal patrol, and from those early years, I had a coveted interest to become an educator,” said Una.

She pursued her passion in becoming an educator and decided during her teaching career that obtaining a Master of Education as a Reading Specialist would be the best way to help her students that struggle in reading and writing.  She stated that “one of the best things the program has taught me is that I teach living breathing children first and a curriculum second.”  She added, “that concept encouraged me to develop a fair and honest relationship with all my students so that they can grow to trust me as their teacher.”

She recalls one course in particular that really stands out for her.  The cultural diversity class, a required course in the Reading Specialist program, has helped challenge her to become a more student-centered teacher.  She noted that her professor, Dr. Mayor, challenged her to analyze multiple perspectives on some of the most immediate issues confronting the classrooms of today.  Her courses provided much knowledge as well as hands-on experience. The information gained has proved to be very helpful to Una.  The writer’s workshop class taught by Dr. Dan Darigan, demonstrated the steps to implement a similar program in her own 6th grade English classroom. “Dr. Darigan completely immersed us in the process. The experience revealed the immense benefits writers’ workshop presents to students as they develop the art of writing” said Una. She consequently adopted the workshop model as an integral part of her language arts class.

Una concludes, “I would strongly recommend West Chester University because of the talented professors and how accessible they are to students. The courses are very relevant and upon completing the program, there is a true sense of preparedness.”