Mary Hopgood, MEd ’02

Teacher Inspired to Help Trepidatious Middle Schoolers

Mary was first attracted to the Antioch University New England program because it offered her a chance to get her master’s degree in two years without interrupting her teaching. But what she found were benefits that would go much deeper.

At the time, Mary was concerned that the children who came to her as fifth graders didn’t benefit from the support that a close-knit school community would provide. The children are coming to us from tiny elementary schools with one class per grade, sometimes one class per two grade levels. They’d come with enormous trepidation knowing only a few of the kids who would be their classmates for the next three years.

Mary used her practicum to develop an advisory program to connect the kids with each other, to give them a common purpose, and to create a strong community in the classroom. Mary’s advisory program offers an avenue for discussing topics such as making friends, listening to others, and valuing others’ opinions, even when they differ from your own. The program also reinforces the South Meadow School theme of friendship, respect, cooperation, and caring.

Mary says that “the compassionate community she was seeking for her middle school children was modeled in the Experienced Educators Program. Though we only met one weekend a month as a class, we’d spend time sharing what we experienced since we were last together. We took on a huge challenge and we made it through together.”

Share on facebook
Facebook
Share on twitter
Twitter
Share on linkedin
LinkedIn
Share on email
Email
Antioch University

Since our founding 1852, Antioch University has remained on the forefront of social justice, inclusion, and equality – regardless of ethnicity, gender, creed, orientation, focus of study, or ability.

Antiochians actively reflect these shared values to inspire positive change in the world. Common Thread is where we document the stories that showcase our communities actions, so the change we work for can be shared widely.  

© 2020 Antioch University. All Rights Reserved.

Skip to content