October 03, 2011

Michael Arrieta-Walden

MAT. ’10, third grade teacher, Tigard-Tualatin School District
MAT. ’10, third grade teacher, Tigard-Tualatin School District

Why do you love teaching?

I am currently teaching 28 wonderfully curious third graders. Both the students and I grow each day as we learn new skills in such a wide range of subjects. Many of my students are English language learners who enrich our classroom with their bilingual talents.

Why do you think is teaching an important profession?

A fundamental ideal of America is that education is opportunity. Providing an education for students regardless of their background, regardless of their means, is extremely vital. As a teacher I feel like I’m helping realize that ideal. I especially feel like immigrant children deserve that same opportunity. I want to make a difference for them.

What is your goal as an educator?

Now, armed with the best teaching practices, to be the fiercest, most passionate advocate for my students.

Can you describe a moment when you saw a light bulb go off for a child?

One in particular was a student who at fifth grade still had not learned to read. I spent weeks and weeks working with that child. Helping that child learn to read at that late of an age was hugely rewarding. I do think that’s changed his life forever.

Did you have a favorite class at Lewis & Clark?

Easy: Social, Historical, and Ethical Perspectives on Education (ED 550), taught by Zaher Wahab.


Learn more about becoming a teacher at Lewis & Clark.