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The Lasso

The Student News Site of Santa Rosa Academy

The Lasso

The Student News Site of Santa Rosa Academy

The Lasso

An Interview with Mr. Sanchez, Teacher of Four Subjects

Miguel Sanchez is a beloved teacher at SRA who has been working here since 2009, making him the teacher who has taught here the longest. Having been here that long, he has fluctuated between many different classes in various subjects. He began teaching 6th grade math and science, but over the years has ended up teaching two different engineering classes, computer science, robotics, and leadership. With so much experience in so many different teaching situations, Sanchez is sure to provide a unique perspective on teaching.

A picture of Mr. Sanchez in front of his whiteboard, ready to teach. Photo taken at SRA. ( by Miguel Sanchez)

When asked what inspired him to pursue a career in teaching, Sanchez shared that during the time in high school when he was unsure of what he would do in the future, his parents gave some important advice. They told him to do something he enjoyed doing, so that he would never have to dread going to work. He then shared the specific moments that made him realize that teaching could be a good fit for him.

“So one thing I started thinking of is what makes me happy when I’m doing it… I have some little brothers that are like five years younger than me, and when they were in middle school, my mom would make me help them with their math because it was a little too advanced for her. She knew I had already gone through it [their math classes] and I would help my little brothers… like tutor them. I remember one day, my brother came home, and he had taken a quiz on something we went over, and he got an A. He was just so excited… and I felt so good about it, and that’s the one feeling that I kept coming back to, like ‘that’s what I want to do” said Mr. Sanchez

Evidently, Sanchez was right about his hunch that he would enjoy teaching, as he teaches a total of five different courses in our school. When asked how he managed juggling all these classes and lesson plans, Sanchez said that, as he’s been teaching these for around 5 years, he’s used to it by now. The addition of classes to his load were gradual, as almost every year, a class was added for him. He said he started with 2 engineering courses, next year computer science was added, then robotics next year. Though, during those first few years where new courses were added every year, organization was essential for Sanchez to stay afloat.

“If you don’t stay organized on what you’re doing and don’t make a plan for what you’re doing every day, then it can really catch up with you, and you could really be off guard, off your game. Then kids aren’t learning, and that’s not what you want. So I think the answer to that question is organization. Organization is key” said Mr. Sanchez.

With Sanchez teaching so many subjects, it is natural for one to wonder which is his favorite. Sanchez answered that, though he enjoys teaching all his classes, he’d say his favorite is Engineering.

“It’s because of all the reasons I like the other classes. Number one, you get to be really creative. You have a lot of math concepts that I really like because I like being creative, but you could also have times where you have a defined answer. You know? When you’re doing a math problem, there’s no way to be creative. You’re gonna get the answer you’re gonna get. The right answer. And I like that about engineering, but then we also get to create stuff that doesn’t exist, so it’s a good mix of both” Mr. Sanchez said.

Miguel Sanchez and Johnathan Copeland working on a motherboard with Blake Stump watching in the background. Photo taken at SRA.

When questioned on what teaching methods he thinks are most effective, he expressed that his favorite method is a mixture of trial by fire and learning from your mistakes. He said he prefers letting his students try things on their own at first, so after they fail, they pay attention to his explanation because they want to understand how to succeed.

“Once you’ve understood what you did wrong, then you will not do it wrong. That’s why I like kids to do it wrong first or discover how to do it on their own” Mr. Sanchez said.

Sanchez shared that during his high school years, he wasn’t as concentrated on being a good student as much as he wishes he had been. However, he felt he made good use of his time by making good friends that he enjoyed spending time with. With his friends being such an integral part of his high school experience, Sanchez said that he decided to dedicate his school’s equivalent of a senior quote to his friends.

“We had a senior newspaper in [my] high school, and what we did is we got to write a little article. Everybody got to write a little paragraph on what they wanna leave behind. I remember using it to say thank you and goodbye to all my friends, kinda summarizing what they all meant to me and how they made my life worth it in high school” said Mr. Sanchez.

Finally, to wrap up the interview, Sanchez was asked what had kept him at SRA for so many years. He answered the following:

“I get that question all the time. People come and go [from SRA], and I got a real easy answer. It’s the students. It’s you guys … I’ve been at other schools before. This isn’t the only school I’ve ever taught at, so I know what it’s like to be at other schools, and there’s nothing like SRA. The fact is that with the character we have here, the types of students we have here, I’ve never seen that anywhere else. That’s what’s kept me here the longest. It makes my job easier, more rewarding … we have good kids, and that’s what keeps me here the most” Mr. Sanchez said.

Miguel Sanchez’s response proves how much he cares about his students here at SRA, and is a sign of how much effort he will continue to put into teaching his many classes.

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About the Contributor
Enrique Torrico, Staff Writer
Enrique Torrico is a junior at Santa Rosa Academy. He has been going to Santa Rosa since halfway through 9th grade. Before that he went to Elsinore High School. He was put in the journalism class but so far likes it. He is from Menifee, California and his parents are from Peru. Some of his hobbies consist of drawing, playing with his dog, and playing video games. An interesting fact about him is that he can speak two languages. After high school he is planning on going to a community college then maybe transferring to a university. 
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