Beatty employing diverse experiences in teaching

From California to Coppell, continuing affinity for education


Sneha Sash

New Tech High @ Coppell English IV & AP Literature Facilitator Samantha Beatty is a new teacher at Coppell ISD. Moving from California to Texas, this is her first year working in this district.

Nanditha Nagavishnu, Staff Writer

After spending four years teaching world history, U.S. history, and sophomore and junior English classes at Mt. Carmel High School in San Diego, New Tech High @ Coppell English IV and AP literature teacher Samantha Beatty moved to Texas to continue teaching.

Through her majors in psychology and history at California State University, Northridge and her experience working as a legal assistant and paralegal at a family law focused firm in Los Angeles, Beatty brings her diverse experiences to her classroom practices. Even though she is far from California’s mild weather and accessible beaches, Beatty is looking forward to building relationships with her new students this year.

Why did you choose to become a teacher after working in law?
I decided to be a teacher because in family law you work with a lot of parents who struggle creating custody schedules, blatantly fighting over their children. I could see the emotional turmoil the children were going through. I really hated that. I’m from a divorced family, so I know exactly what it’s like. I often found myself removing the kids from the situation, helping them with their homework, conversing to distract them and I found myself bonding with the children. I had this transition period in my life where I realized I didn’t want to work with adults; I wanted to work with children, and I ultimately decided that a way to work with children was to teach them.

What do you enjoy about teaching literature?
I am an avid reader. I read at least a book a week. I love teaching literature because there are so many different genres and time periods. I allow students to choose books from this eclectic realm of possibilities and then teach them the literature they chose because it really allows for creativity. Students find that fondness for reading on their own.

How does your background in law and history influence your teaching?
I truly feel that English is more of a humanities course and should be taught in sync with history, so much of literature is ingrained in the time period it was created. [It] is a reflection of the history that’s happening. I incorporate the history of what was happening during that time period and why that piece of literature is important. I bring those historical elements into my classroom, not only because of my history background but because it’s relevant. You can’t fully understand a book unless you know why the book is created.

Why do you think learning English is important for today’s students?
English is important because we learn skills that are implemented in every career. We focus on reading, writing, listening and speaking. These skills – especially listening – are extremely important in professional life. I think the four skills we focus on in the English curriculum are essential for any student regardless of their career or ambitions.

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