Lauren Gonzalez stays motivated at home and at school
Name: Lauren Gonzalez
Department: Health and Physical Education
Year started: 2010
Classes taught: Dance and Health
Education: Health Education Major from Salisbury University and received her masters from George Washington University. Previous Jobs: Health and Dance Teacher at Kennedy High School
Hobbies: Swimming, Tennis, Dance and Hanging out with family
Lauren Gonzalez has a full plate. She is a dance and health education teacher at Blair, the Student Service Learning Coordinator and Rockville High School's Varsity Poms Coach. Even with all that responsibility, she is expecting her first child. Yet, she still seems relaxed as she begins to recount her life. She holds herself up straight in her chair and offers a welcoming smile. She is dressed as if she is ready for a workout, wearing a jacket, black workout pants and keeps her light blond hair in a high ponytail.
After teaching dance classes at Kennedy High School for three years, Gonzalez joined the Blair staff as a dance and health education teacher in 2010. Her primary reason for coming to Blair was the new opportunities that it offered. "I decided to come to Blair because I wanted to teach a new population of students and I was ready for a new challenge in my teaching career," she says.
Gonzalez has always lived in the Washington area and has never found a reason to leave. She grew up in Columbia, Maryland and then majored in Health Education at Salisbury University and later got her master's degree from George Washington University in DC.
Originally she planned to study nursing, but she reevaluated her future plans and decided to switch majors. "I guess the nursing major wasn't really for me,” she confesses with a shrug. However, she was still interested in the subject, so she decided to pursuit a career in Health Education. "When I found out that my college, Salisbury, offered a Health Education major, I realized that was what I am interested in," she reveals.
In addition to health, she is also the dance teacher at Blair. "I have danced my whole life, so I decided I wanted to do both a Health and Dance combination,” she explains. Dancing has been an rewarding part of her life since a very young age. "I have been dancing since the age of three and I get such joy out of dancing," she says. To her dance is not just exercise, it means more than that. She says her favorite part about dancing is being able to express herself freely and openly. She also enjoys taking dance classes outside of school. For the past three years, she has been co-coaching Rockville High School's Poms team. "I really enjoy it," she states, with a huge smile, adding, "next year our team will be moved up to the first division, so we are all really excited."
In the classroom, she loves keeping her students active. "I use random calling to keep the students on their toes and make sure they are paying attention during class," she says. She describes how she keeps her class alert and lively. "When teaching I like to always keep my students involved and have many class discussions. This way the students are the center of their own learning," she explains.
Mrs. Gonzalez knows she has done her job when she sees her students applying themselves to work towards a goal. At the end of the semester, her dance class has a performance. "I love to see the performance. I enjoy them seeing that they've learned the dance and are enjoying themselves," she says, proudly. In her health classes, she is pleased when the students take something away from her class. "I like seeing the students understand the concepts that I am teaching,” she notes, adding, "I guess, I like to see the rewards the students get from my teaching."
She finds it difficult to think of her least favorite part of teaching; she looks around the room as she collects her thoughts. She decides the worst part is when students do not complete their assignments and choose not to apply themselves. "I hate when the students don't follow through with expectations and when they purposely do not do their work," she says. She also is disappointed when students do not accept the help she offers. "It upsets me when they start to fail and fall behind even when I go out of my way to help them," she says with a frown.
Although she is expecting her first child very soon, she still keeps active in competitive sports. She enjoys swimming and playing tennis against her husband. "I love doing activities that keep me moving, but I also love just hanging with my family,"she says.
In addition to everything she does, Ms. Gonzalez is preparing for the birth of her first child. "I am having a baby really soon, and that will become my newest hobby," she jokes.
Not many teachers keep their students on their toes as much as Ms. Gonzalez. She includes her personal fondness of staying active in her lessons which keeps her students engaged and her classes interesting.
Martha Morganstein. Hi! I'm Martha and I am one of the news editors. I row crew and I am fluent in French. I hate breakfast food and I love baked goods and sunny days. More »
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