2010 graduate Katie Maybell follows her dream of teaching

For her first year, Maybell purses a career in teaching fifth grade at Prairie Ridge Elementary School.

March 4, 2016

LEFT: 2010 graduate Katie Maybell’s senior photo. RIGHT: On Friday, January 29, 2016 graduate Katie Maybell stands in front of her classroom door at Prairie Ridge Elementary. “I always knew I wanted to be a teacher” Maybell said. “I love being around kids all day.”
By Taylar Powers
LEFT: 2010 graduate Katie Maybell’s senior photo. RIGHT: On Friday, January 29, 2016, Maybell stands in front of her classroom door at Prairie Ridge Elementary. “I always knew I wanted to be a teacher” Maybell said. “I love being around kids all day.”

As 2010 graduate Katie Maybell teaches her fifth grade students, she experiences flashbacks from her learning time in the same school where she found her passion for teaching others. After leaving high school, Maybell pursed her dream job as a fifth grade teacher at Prairie Ridge Elementary School. During her high school career, Maybell was academically and athletically involved in clubs such as NHS and sports such as track, volleyball and basketball.

Maybell stayed within the state of Kansas for her schooling from grade school at Woodsonia Elementary through college at Pittsburg State University, and plans to achieve Master’s Degree soon. Obtaining a job in the same school district Maybell had grown up in came as a surprise to her, due to the rapid process of being hired.

“I was thrilled,” Maybell said. “I’m still kind of in shock because it was straight out of college and it was my dream ever since I was a little girl.”

Deciding which grade to teach came as an easy decision to Maybell because of her previous experience as a student teacher for fifth grade at Prairie Ridge during college.

“There’s never a dull moment — the staff here at Prairie Ridge is amazing and I like to be around kids all day,” Maybell said. “Now that I’m at the grade level and love the age the kids are at, I know I’ll be staying for a while.”

According to Maybell, teaching in the same district she grew up in has many benefits due to her past experience at the schools.

“I think there’s lots advantages, because, if the kids are talking about Monticello Trails or Mill Valley, I’m like, ‘Oh, I’ve been there,’ so I know how things are for curriculum and academics,” Maybell said.

One of Maybell’s biggest influences in pursuing a career in teaching was volleyball coach Ashley Agre, who coached Maybell from 2006 to 2009. Although Agre never had Maybell as a student, she still had the opportunity to get to know her through school activities.

“[Maybell] was one of those people who was a really hard worker, she was really funny and she knew how to make light of a situation,” Agre said. “She was one of those people that made my job a lot of fun, made me laugh all the time and she’s a student you never forget.”

In addition to Agre, Maybell found physical education teacher Amy McClure and social studies teachers Corey Wurtz and Chris Dunback to be some of the most impactful teachers during her high school career.

“I had wonderful teachers when I was at Mill Valley, and, now that I’m a teacher, I want to be an example, like I had, to my students,” Maybell said.

According to Agre, Maybell grew up wanting to be a teacher, so it didn’t come as a surprise that she chose a career path in teaching.

“[Maybell] has that personality, especially elementary school, she’s just so caring and loving and understanding and patient, she’s so patient. I feel like teaching is the career path she was made for,” Agre said. “It makes your heart happy to see someone who you know is going to be successful in a job and pursuing that career.”

After teaching for the past few years, Maybell’s advice to those thinking about pursuing a career in teaching is to go for it if you enjoy impacting others lives.

“I would suggest teaching as a career if you want to make a difference in children’s lives,” Maybell said. “It’s the best career choice.”

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