Otto excited to connect with students

“I want my students to get to know me and I want to get to know my students and create a fun and very lovable environment.”- Ariel Otto, new ELS teacher

Shortly after graduating in May from UCM with a degree in Family Consumer Science, Arial Otto began her teaching career at BSHS in August. Teaching social studies, creative arts, and family consumer science, as Otto put it, “I’m a busy gal.”

Otto aims to create a warm, caring environment for her class. In order to make everyone feel comfortable, Otto strives to build strong relationships with her students. Otto described this as one of the most important aspects of being a teacher.

“I want my students to get to know me and I want to get to know my students,” Otto said, “and create a fun and very lovable environment.”

Since the beginning of the year, Otto has felt the support from her fellow staff members. Experienced teachers have offered words of wisdom, such as “take one day at a time.”

Ms. Otto’s inspiration for teaching, her high school FCS teacher, greatly impacted how she wants to run her classroom.

“She was very welcoming, she was very relatable, she greeted every single one of her students at the front of the door,” Ms. Otto said. “I didn’t know what I wanted to do when I went into college, and, one day, I was listening to her lecture and I was like ‘I want to be her.’ I want to teach.”

Ms. Otto’s experience student teaching at Blue Springs South also impacted her approach to education.

“I learned how I want to run my day-to-day activity from my student teaching,” Otto said, “I learned a lot for what I want to do in my classroom.”

Otto has many aspirations for her students and her classroom environment.

“I have a lot of goals, [and] one of them would be that this room is a safe room– it’s always safe,” Otto said. “Another goal would be that they can create new relationships with their friends and with me. And then my last goal would be to have a fun year and to learn lots of new things.”

To students looking to pursue a career in education, Otto spoke a few words of encouragement and passed on some advice.

“You can do it,” Otto said. “It’s going to be hard. It’s very stressful. Sometimes you have lots and lots of state testing you have to do, but you can do it. Don’t give up; persevere.”

Being a new teacher can be a daunting task; for both herself and others. Otto stressed that they have earned their position and that they can handle it.

“I would just say that over and over, that you can do it,” Otto said. “Don’t be hard on yourself.”

Otto believes that being a positive influence in her students’ lives begins by being a relatable and reliable teacher.  She defines what she wants to be as a teacher as “loving, caring, and always there.”