Middle School student wins KHEAA essay contest

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Submitted to the Spencer Magnet

Kelsie Justice, a sixth-grader at Spencer County Middle School, was recently named the winner of the Dream Out Loud Challenge, hosted by KHEAA.  Students were to write an essay, poem or produce a video demonstrating how they will change the world after college.

Kelsie submitted a poem and an essay, but won for her essay. She won a $1,500 college savings account as well as $500 for the middle school. Her essay and poem appear below:

After College I Will...
I will change the world by teaching one student at a time. I want to enable my students through education and motivation, to leave the world better than they have found it. I feel that as a teacher we owe it to the future generations to instruct them how to handle the problems they will encounter in hopes that they will pass fewer problems to their children.
Upon graduation from University of Kentucky, I will attend graduate school. I will also receive my Graduate Degree. I will use my education background and my life experiences to enlighten and teach my students. Methods I would use in my classroom to get student involved would include community service projects, recycling drives, field trips to shelters and centers. Last, food and clothing drives within class. Activities such as these, will allow students to see the changes they are making. They will get the students motivated in a way that no general lesson can. Children need to feel the selfless satisfaction that comes from helping their fellow man. I will strive to make myself approachable to my students. They will know that I am always there to help them. My goal for my classroom is I want students to enter my class and feel respected. Not only feel respected, enthused. They will be ready to begin whatever journey we will embark on. When you have an excited enthusiastic class, you really can change the world.
Overall, I believe my education philosophy is to improve my students and through them, make a difference. I want to look at my young children sitting in their desks before me, knowing that their futures can hold anything. There is a sense of possibility that exists in young children unlike any other time in their lives. The job of being a teacher is hard work, with long hours, little pay, and constant demands but they are all worth it when you have one student come back and say “Thank You”. I will teach, not just make a difference in one child’s life and be content with that. Every child deserves a chance and sometimes the teacher is the only one who sees this spark in the child’s eyes. It is all up to the student to make that spark into flame, but as a teacher I can provide the fuel. I’m Kelsie Justice and I WILL change the world one student at a time.

Changing the World
One Student at a Time
by Kelsie Michelle justice

After college I plan to be a teacher,
I will strive to change the world,
One student at a time,
Kind of like a preacher.

Teachers have a positive influence on minds,
Growing from day to day,
Year to year,
One student at a time.

Changing the world starting with a child,
Inspiring children to reach for their dreams,
Taking every day to extreme,
One student at a time.

When my students look back on life,
They will remember the lessons,
I plan to leave a lasting expression,
Changing the world,
One student at a time.