Growing up, I felt like the average kid. I had parents, I went to school, and I had siblings. In that way, pretty much every child is the same. I never thought about it at the time but there were some things that may have given me an advantage over the other children. Nothing drastic, but it may have changed the way that people perceived me compared to the other students because, let’s be honest, everyone judges a book by it’s cover.
Socio Economic Status Before my parents got divorced we had it all; a big house with a room for both of my sisters and myself, a huge back yard with a porch, and a pool. We had the American dream. A mother and father both working and bringing in a great income into a great house to support their three beautiful daughters. There was a point in time when my mom would take me to the Disney store in the mall and spend $100 on a giant teddy bear just because she felt like spoiling me. My parents got divorced when I was very young though. When I was in preschool they split up. The change in my socio economic status was eye opening. My mother, my sisters, and I moved around a bit until we finally settled in two hours away from the rest of our family. My mom worked a full time job and went back to school. We ended up on a dead end road full of run down duplexes. It was a two bedroom so the three of us kids had to squeeze into one small room. The place was so disgusting when we moved in my mom wouldn’t even let us sit on the floor to watch tv, she would make us bring in the kitchen chairs. Fortunately, my mom was able to save up enough money to cover the basics and we got new carpets and painted the walls in every room. We did everything we could to make the place live-able but that still doesn’t change the location or the size of the place we were living and growing. We ended up growing up on our own. My mom was always gone at work or school. We learned to manage on our own. From first grade and on it was my job to get my two younger sisters home from school safely, help them with their homework, make them dinner, give them baths, and put them to bed. Which, looking back, is probably the reason we’re so close today. Then later that night, my mom would come home from school and send me to bed. I learned quickly that that’s how the working middle class live. I didn’t have the big house with the pool in the back yard anymore. I had the two bedroom duplex on the dead end street. At a young age that’s hard to understand but now I know that my mom was doing everything she could do to make a better life for my sisters and I. It’s still a never ending battle. I feel like once you’re in a certain level of the economy you don’t really leave it. My family and I were lower middle class. I just got my own apartment this past month and I’m still in the same class. It’s very hard to go above and beyond the different classes but, being from the lower middle class, I feel like I’ll be able to understand what some of the children are going through. I already know that most of my extra money will be going to my students because that’s exactly what I did when I was teaching my own students in high school. I’ll always be there to help my students, even if it’s financially. I think this will make me empathize with any students that I have that are going through a rough divorce or a financial situation. I knew what it was like to have nice things and then have them taken away, seemingly overnight. I don’t think I would ever hold something against students that were privileged though. Everyone wants more for their children so who am I to feel “jealous” of a child whose parent is giving them more. I know when I have my children I want to be able to give them what they want.
Ethnicity and Race A little blond haired, blue eyed, white girl seems to be the poster child of innocence. Not that I needed to use that defense. I was innocent. All through school I was