A Love for Learning with Ms. Semana

School is back in session! This last year I survived my first year of teaching. Regardless of how extreme and difficult this experience was, I can honestly say I have just experienced the prouded moment of my life. Spending the last year teaching at REACH Academy with my 2nd graders has not only fueled my passion for equity and education, but it has given me countless of opportunities to do work I am in love with.

Background information: I graduated from the University of Washington with a Bachelor of the Arts degree in Communication and American Ethnic Studies. Due to my extracurricular activities and work I did with youth in my community, I've always known my cause in this world is education. I applied for Teach For America and started teaching 2nd grade at REACH Academy. My school is considered a focus school with the Oakland Unified School District. What that means is that in the past REACH Academy has been very low performing and known for their neglectance to the youth in their community. Students are not getting an education that will benefit them. Many are falling years behind their grade level and families are losing interest in keeping their children in school. This sense of urgency is huge in this community and after a year of implementing structure and redeveloping a culture, change is happening and it is extremely exciting! 

I started last year with a vision and very many goals. Although all my goals have not yet been met, I was able to get my students to start thinking about how they can respectfully defend their own opinion by gaining self-confidence in their personal interests, story, beliefs and identity. My students gained a deeper understanding that there is always more and that they can do whatever they put their mind to. Overall, my students knew I was invested in them as a teacher. This in turn has helped students gain the confidence and belief to achieve and surpass all their goals. I am excited to continue the work started with most of the same kids, as I am teaching 3rd grade this year at REACH Academy.

My passions and goals working in education in East Oakland could not have been done without the countless support of all of YOU! Last year, I was able to raise $1,500. That money went toward supplies and materials in the classroom and supported projects and fieldtrips that allowed my students to grow. My kids and I express our extreme gratitude to all our donors. I need your help to continue the work being done at REACH Academy. With the $1,500 raised last year, I hope to raise an additional $1,000 for my 3rd graders this year. Through my experience, high quality literature is so vital to a students education. So my main focus this year is building an influential library for my students. Together, we can give these students 100% and the opportunity to understand their purpose and know their future. Together, we can help them discover a love for learning that every child deserves! The smallest donation can give a student a great year of education.

I thank you for the support already shown and also in advance for your generosity and kind heart. Thank you for understanding the importance of an education in our children's lives. A million thanks for supporting me as a teacher and most importantly, supporting OUR CHILDREN who are unfortunately not given the privileges and opportunities they deserve. It really takes a whole community to raise a child and your support will undoubtedly help them succeed and blossom into the greatest beings they were born to be! If you are ever in Oakland, please get a hold of me. My students would love to meet their supporters!

With my greatest gratitude,
Ms. Shalea Semana
  • Jonas Nocom 
    • $20 
    • 92 mos
  • Vicky and EJ 
    • $40 
    • 92 mos
  • Jamila Eloi 
    • $20 
    • 92 mos
  • Charles Cole 
    • $20 
    • 92 mos
  • Jeremy Viray 
    • $20 
    • 92 mos
See all

Organizer

Shalea Semana 
Organizer
Oakland, CA
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