Updated: Jul 26
After working as a classroom aide, Kim Vaughan fell in love with teaching. So, she returned to college to become a teacher. More than 25 years later, she still loves teaching.
“I enjoy working with students,” she said. “I enjoy watching them when they get the hidden meanings and connections of things in literature, and seeing them make connections between school and real life and why it is important for them to learn and apply what they've learned.”
Kim currently serves as an English Instructor in the Upper School at St. Cyprian’s Episcopal School. Keep reading to learn more about Kim Vaughan and why she chose to teach at SCES.
SCES: Tell us about yourself. Kim: I was born and raised in Lufkin. I graduated from Lufkin High School, attended Angelina College, and graduated from SFA. I was a stay-at-home mom for four years and then went to work at Junior High West as a classroom aide. I loved working with students and decided to go back to college to become a teacher. I taught in public education for 25 years.
SCES: Why did you become a teacher? Kim: I enjoy working with students. I enjoy watching them when they get the hidden meanings and connections of things in literature, and seeing them make connections between school and real life and why it is important for them to learn and apply what they've learned.
SCES: What is your favorite lesson to teach? Kim: My favorite subject to teach is middle school English. I love literature, vocabulary, writing, and reading. My favorite lessons have to do with "The Odyssey," anything with Shakespeare, and showing the connections between literature and history.
SCES: Why did you choose to teach at St. Cyprian's? Kim: I liked the atmosphere of a smaller school, smaller classes, and being able to get to know the students on a more personal level. The faculty is amazing; we are like a family.
SCES: What can students expect when they enter your classroom? Kim: I have found over the years that having a routine helps students perform better. I establish the classroom rules and expectations of my class so the students know what I expect of them at all times. I let them know about myself as a person - family, hobbies, likes, dislikes. We spend several days doing get-to-know-you activities. Students create a personality T-shirt that describes who they are without using words, pictures only. I get to know my students so they know I am available for them, if they need someone to talk to or are having trouble with something.
SCES: How are you innovative in your classroom? Kim: Independent reading is very important for students. So they are given specific genre reading assignments every three to four weeks. We read short stories and novels that they can relate to in a personal way, put themselves in the story, and explain how they would handle the situation if it were them. I also teach how music represents poetry.
SCES: What is the best thing about being a teacher? Kim: The thing I love most about teaching is the relationships formed with co-workers and students. I love being able to show students the importance of the subject taught and how to apply what has been learned to everyday life. I get to teach something that I absolutely love. I make sure my students know that reading and writing will benefit everything they do in life.