Educator Spotlight: Meet Eric Garcia
Fifth grade teacher in California uses new tech to build relationships with students
This story is part of a series that celebrates Teacher Appreciation Month. Each day in May, we will introduce to you an outstanding educator within the Flipgrid community. Stories by Angela Tewalt.
When enthusiastic tech teachers like Eric Garcia discover new tools to use in the classroom, they do not keep it casual.
They do not shrug their shoulders at possibility or merely think about how it might be cool. Instead, teachers like Eric scour for digital tools, learn all they can, maximize opportunity, tinker for hours into the night, introduce to their students with delight, play and learn some more and soar.
Eric loves to teach – not only because he loves learning, too, but because he believes in the student to adapt, grow and thrive along with him.
“I’m constantly teaching new things,” says Eric, a fifth-grade science and P.E. teacher in McFarland, Calif. “I’m always on the go, I never sit down, I’m always hands-on, I love having tech in my class, and I love watching my students discover something new.”
Working with the Big Kids
Eric has been teaching for 15 years. He’s been mainly in the early elementary classroom but this year ventured up to the big kids in fifth grade. He’s reveling in the newness.
“For one, they’re more independent,” Eric says. “They’re still wanting to do the work, still wanting to please you and make you happy, but now I get to work more in our fabrication lab. I’m teaching them how to 3D print, how to use laser cutters, and we do screen printing, too. It’s been really fun.”
Eric enjoys science because it’s a lot of hands-on, never-sit-still, keep moving group work, and he sees longevity in that.
“When they grow up, they’re going to be working with other people in the job field,” he says. “They need to learn how to collaborate and communicate with others in a group setting. I love helping them build on that and become the citizens they need to be.”