MCHS prepares student-teacher for his future

MCHS hosts Mr. Vollmert for his student teaching program in order to become a full time teacher.

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Describing the Russian Revolution to students, Mr. Eric Vollmert strives for students to look beyond the label of "student-teacher".

Sage Rainey, Staff Writer

Nervously, Mr. Eric Vollmert prepares lesson plans for AP Human Geography and Revolutions through History for the first time. McHenry High School is playing a big part in his preparation to be a teacher, and how he will impact his students in the future. Vollmert is learning how to teach in a respectful, welcoming environment at MCHS. 

 Vollmert attended Illinois State University as a business major for two years, but switched to teaching late sophomore year. “I found a strong passion for teaching after my second year of college… I’ve always enjoyed learning history” Vollmert explains. Now, he’s on his way to graduating and becoming a certified teacher. This school year, he’s spent most of his time in McHenry in order to be our student-teacher working with Mrs. Sandee Dwire for AP Human Geography and Revolutions through History. He’s always been interested in history and social studies, so now he’s on a path to help students with that subject.

He has now been given full liberty to teach his classes as a part of the student teaching process in order to reach his personal goals. He loves MCHS despite the differences to his alma mater Crystal Lake South. “I think I’m exposed to more [types of students] here than at CLS. It’s more diverse, and that’s been helping me learn a lot [about teaching].” Vollmert likes his high school, of course, but the differences here are doing wonders for his upcoming teaching certification. 

Vollmert may still be learning how to help others learn, but he’s had great help from MCHS kids and teachers alike. “The students here are great… I was nervous that first day because I didn’t know much [about MCHS] but every student [and teacher] has been super welcoming,” Vollmert specifies. It’s nerve-wracking to be new at teaching, but the environment at MCHS is helping Vollmert adjust to his skills and upcoming career. 

Learning to teach can be a long road, but Vollmert is handling it with calmness and ease, and the students are amazing back-up for his learning curve. “… getting to know [students] better, figuring out what makes them tick in class…  it’s something I look forward to with every day,” states Vollmert. He loves teaching high school students, even if they don’t always appreciate the subject. 

The students are also benefiting from having Vollmert in class. The teaching goes both ways, after all, and each side is grateful for this opportunity at school. “He’s new at teaching, so obviously he’s still got things to be better at, but he’s so amazing, fun, and chill. I really like having class with him,” expresses freshman student Shannon Rainey. Vollmert loves interacting with and helping students, and the students are grateful to have him at MCHS. Despite his lack of experience, Vollmert is tackling the job of teaching not only a sophomore class, but an AP class very well. 

Vollmert is starting his 2020 strong as he’s finally the one behind the desk, and in front of the board. His hands may have been shaking, and his voice might have been faltering, but it’s clear that the McHenry High School students and faculty have helped him along in the beginning of his career. Mr. Eric Vollmert will soon be a fully fledged teacher, and MCHS has been more than happy to have him here. The welcoming and understanding environment of this school is one not to be reckoned with, for students can even teach the teachers.