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What Teach 313 Means to Me: Reflections from A Detroit Educator

The blog was originally published by Teach313.

When I became a teacher, I knew that I loved kids and I wanted to be connected to them in an impactful way. What I did not know was the powerful effect the children and their families would have on me.

Shawness Woods-Zende

Every time I walk into a classroom, I experience something different. Sometimes, I hear a sad story about a child or their family. Other times I hear about the various challenges that teachers face daily. However, there is one thing that remains the same and that is the children’s ability to make me laugh, and their eagerness to learn. Each time I walk into a classroom the children are excited to find out what I am going to teach them. What they don’t know is that I am just as excited to find out what they are going to teach me.

This sentiment is what I get to amplify with Teach 313. As a Teach 313 Educator Ambassador, I feel celebrated and empowered to share my story. Teach 313 provides a space for teachers to be recognized and uplifted in an unprecedented way–this hasn’t been done before. As an ambassador, I have the opportunity to represent and tell stories about teachers and our work in Detroit. Finally, Teach 313 is in direct alignment with my personal vision about how to improve our educational system here in Detroit.

As I consider this vision, I am proud that Teach 313 is showcasing and responding to the immense dedication and commitment that I see coming from the teachers in Detroit. Many of us spend our personal time and money trying to make our classrooms better in order to provide high-quality learning experiences for the children we serve, and I am excited to see that local businesses are stepping up to support us. We all know that we do great work, but we also know that we need the help of the community at large. If at this point you’re wondering how you can help? If you are a business, then you can become one of our community partners and offer discounts. If you are a citizen, you can follow and interact with us on social media; Make comments, ask questions to share our posts. If you are a teacher, download the app, visit the website and spread the word. Both platforms are filled with information about our mission, discounts and incentives and information on teaching in Detroit.

Join me as we support and celebrate Detroit educators!

Teach 313 is an educator talent initiative focused on recruitment, professional development, and quality of life of Detroit teachers. To learn more, visit

Comments (1)

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  • Gabrielle Johnson

    Shawness you have so Much Awesome Sauce!!!! Thank you for being a Great Educator, Leader and Coach🌈

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