Teaching Magnet 2021-2022 School Year


Teaching magnet ambassador Melissa Elmhorst with Ms. Rodriguez at the Teaching and Law magnet banquet.

By Melissa Elmhorst, Staff Writer

Miami High’s Teaching Magnet has been through some major changes this year.

Since former lead teacher Ms. Berrios left MHS, Ms. Enriquez was added to the teaching program and “has been great at growing the secondary track,” says Ms. Peyno, the new magnet lead teacher. Ms. Peyno also said she, in conjunction with Ms. Rodriguez, the primary strand teacher, and Ms. Enriquez, will introduce two new courses to the secondary track. Ms. Peyno happily shared, “The teaching magnet students will continue to have hands on experiences, so they may foster a love for education.”

Ms. Enriquez explained one of the biggest challenges she and her colleagues faced was repetition in lesson plans for the preschoolers. When asked how she and Ms. Rodriguez are adjusting to fix the issue, she replied, “We learn, review, and replan to make the forthcoming years better.” This year, Ms. Enriquez started switching classrooms with Ms. Rodriguez, so each of their periods could get a chance to teach the preschoolers. Ms. Enriquez added daily objectives to the curriculum: phonological awareness, sensory practice, handwriting, and name practice. In the upcoming year, a new course, “Education and Training Directed Study,” will be implemented in which “students will be in charge of monthly newsletters, calendars, bulletin boards, and homework to ensure the preschoolers are receiving an appropriate education and their parents are well informed,” said Ms. Enriquez.

The post-pandemic running of a preschool is not an easy task, and if anyone can attest to that, it’s Ms. Rodriguez. “The constant quarantining made it extremely difficult to keep consistent in the preschool,” she said. “Ensuring that student teachers were not sick and the preschoolers themselves were not sick was a constant concern for all parties involved.” As COVID-19 restrictions relaxed, the preschool began to run smoothly as it once did pre-pandemic. Increased sanitation practices have been implemented in the preschool for preventative purposes. This is the second year MHS has had a Baby Stings class. “Although our preschool attendance was smaller than last year, we made the area bigger,” said Ms. Rodriguez, describing how she changed the physical layout of her classroom to accommodate the preschoolers. Now, the high schoolers that are not teaching in the preschool stay in the room adjacent to Ms. Rodriguez’s to control the volume level in the classroom.

One significant change Ms. Rodriguez is making to the magnet is instead of having a different group of students teach the preschoolers each period, one group of her students will teach for an entire week. “This builds accountability and integrity for the people in the group,” elaborated Ms. Rodriguez.

Ms. Rodriguez wanted to give a special mention to the entire class of 2022 in the teaching magnet program. Sentimentally, she expressed, “This is my first four-year cycle with the magnet, and I could not have chosen a better group of kids to go through every step of the way with.”