January 17, 2004 - Newport Daily News: Tara Jones was ready for something new and her interest in different cultures led her to join the Peace Corps where she was immersed in the Guatemalan culture and the Spanish language

Peace Corps Online: Directory: Guatemala: Peace Corps Guatemala: The Peace Corps in Guatemala: January 17, 2004 - Newport Daily News: Tara Jones was ready for something new and her interest in different cultures led her to join the Peace Corps where she was immersed in the Guatemalan culture and the Spanish language

By Admin1 (admin) (pool-151-196-35-236.balt.east.verizon.net - 151.196.35.236) on Monday, January 26, 2004 - 6:36 pm: Edit Post

Tara Jones was ready for something new and her interest in different cultures led her to join the Peace Corps where she was immersed in the Guatemalan culture and the Spanish language



Tara Jones was ready for something new and her interest in different cultures led her to join the Peace Corps where she was immersed in the Guatemalan culture and the Spanish language

Portsmouth High School Spanish teacher Tara Jones found her way into teaching while searching for her next challenge. She graduated from URI with a bachelor's degree in health and nutrition and worked for the Massachusetts Department of Health after college.

But after about two years, Jones was ready for something new and her interest in different cultures led her to join the Peace Corps where she was immersed in the Guatemalan culture and the Spanish language.

Guatemala was the first place Jones taught a class. Part of her job was teaching young students about basic health and nutrition. It wasn't like a traditional class here, she said, but it was enough to light a spark.

"It was there that I decided I wanted to become a teacher," she said. "I really loved teaching. I loved being with kids."

But Jones said she knew she wanted to teach older students, with whom she built a rapport. She considered teaching science or health because that was her background.

"I didn't love (those subjects) as much as I love Spanish," she said.

The students Jones teaches in Portsmouth are far less needy than those she taught in Guatemala. She said she thought about teaching in inner-city schools, but her brother, who is also a teacher, told her that every student needs a teacher.

"I thought I was going to make a bigger impact. But now I see the impact is not on such a grand scale," she said. "It's more smaller, day-to-day things. But I realized those things are just as important."

Jones has been teaching at Portsmouth High School for three years and said she enjoys the relationships she has with students. She said she brings a different perspective to the classroom because of experiences.

"I let the kids know that they have so many options, because sometimes they really feel they don't," Jones said. "The more life experiences you have, the more you have to bring to what you're doing."

Jones said the students recognize that as well.

"To get a degree and go back to school to try something new is hard," Jones said. "It shows you want to be here."




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Story Source: Newport Daily News

This story has been posted in the following forums: : Headlines; COS - Guatemala; Secondary Educaion

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