Teacher Appreciation Spotlight: Dawn Engh

Dawn Engh

I have known Mrs. Engh for most of my life. I went to school with her oldest son from the time we were in kindergarten through high school graduation. Her and her husband both volunteered often at our elementary school where she eventually became a teacher! I am excited to spotlight someone I have known for so long with you all.

What grades and/or classes do you teach?

Intervention Support Specialist and Third Grade ELA Support 

How long have you been teaching?

14 years 

What other grades/subjects have you taught, if any?

1, 2, 3

Why teaching? What or who inspired you to be a teacher?

Both my parents are retired educators.

Was teaching your first choice in career? If not, what else did you consider?

I grew up in a education family and was not going to follow in my parents’ footsteps.  I majored in sociology in college with the idea of going into counseling.  However, counseling has become ‘testing’ and isn’t really counseling anymore.  I was a stay-at-home mom for 15 years and a very active volunteer at my children’s elementary school.  When the opportunity arose to enter the classroom, I decided to try it.

Have you thought about changing careers since becoming a teacher?


What was your college major and how has it helped in your teaching career?

[See above]

What is your favorite part about being a teacher?

Watching the ‘light bulb’ turn on!  

What is your least favorite?

This year my least favorite has been the students’ attitudes.  I teach  a group of third grade retainees for 90 minutes each day, with the goal of giving them the skills and strategies needed to pass the state mandated reading test.  Most of them have the ‘don’t care’ attitude, and unfortunately so do their parents.  

What are the biggest challenges you face as a teacher?

Not enough time, lack of parental support, state mandated testing.

What are your goals for your students?

To become as successful as possible, to work up to their potential, to enjoy reading.

What do you want your students to remember about you as a teacher?

That I was there for them, that I wanted them to do their best, that I love them!  

How do you spend your school breaks?

With family, especially my granddaughters!

Give your best advice for someone who may be thinking about a career in teaching.

You’re important and doing important work!!!!  You will be criticized and undervalued, but follow your heart and do what YOU know is right for your children!!!

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