Jacob Riley joined the Elkin High School staff in August as the new American history teacher. He graduated from Starmount High School, Wilkes Community College and Appalachian State University, graduating in May 2015.
Riley decided to become a teacher because he always loved history and was inspired by a teacher in the eighth grade, Coach Livengood, who had taught physical education for around 40 years.
Riley’s favorite units to teach are the World War II lessons and the 1960s. “I like teaching them because there were big events happening [in our country] at the time.”
Like other teachers at Elkin High School, Riley is incorporating STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, and Math) into his daily curriculum. Computer technology often assists students with research and projects, and art is a part of the cultural aspects of their historical American studies.
Riley is new to the Elkin High School staff, but he is quickly learning the ropes. He advised anyone aspiring to teach to have structure in a class. “I was struggling this semester because of this… [A teacher] should make a daily plan to go by.”
Although Riley focuses on historical events in his curriculum, he believes the most important value taught in his class is hard work. He likes to see students try even if they struggle sometimes.
”Just attempting to do your work is what matters,” Riley explained.
Krista Bryant is a member of the Elkin High School Journalism Club.