Balancing Priorities

Freshman+English+teacher+Melanie+Henderson+works+at+her+desk.+%28Cate+Clark+%7C+The+Talon+News%29

Freshman English teacher Melanie Henderson works at her desk. (Cate Clark | The Talon News)

Cate Clark, Reporter

Experiencing life to the fullest while balancing priorities.

Freshman English teacher Melanie Henderson is always looking for the next adventure. As a teenager, she biked from Virginia to Florida with her church group. Throughout the long, physically challenging journey, she learned perseverance and experienced personal growth. Henderson now incorporates these lessons into her personal life and teaching. 

Henderson’s heart for making students feel at home and spending time with family comes with great responsibility. Although she is passionate about her family and job, she is also learning to create time for herself. 

Freshman English teacher Melanie Henderson observes students in her 6th-period class. (Cate Clark | The Talon News)

“Family has always been my number one priority so I definitely put a strong focus on them,” Henderson said. “I’m very dedicated to my job as well, so just learning to balance that takes some time.”

To have a balanced home and work life, she uses running as an escape. Running benefits her mental health and inspires others.

“For me, running just really became kind of an outlet just to manage stress, feel better, healthier, to stay active overall, and to also set that example for my family to stay active,” Henderson said.

Along with exercise, teaching is an important aspect of her life. 

“I think what I most look forward to is just seeing students find what they really enjoy reading,” Henderson said. “Every good reader makes connections so it’s really cool seeing students make connections with their writing, reading, and applying it to real life.” 

Freshman English Teacher Melanie Henderson teaches her 6th-period class. (Cate Clark | The Talon News)

 

Despite family being her top priority, she treats her students as if they are her own. She cares deeply about their well-being and hopes to see them succeed.

“I just love making connections with them,” Henderson said. “I love to go and see some of their extracurricular events to cheer them on because I just feel like we’re family here. I want them to feel like I care about them and am interested in them, not only academically but also personally.”

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