Cultural Night: A Student's POV
By: Nora Artinian
How do you feel about the song that your class is singing?
"I feel very passionate about the song my class is singing. I get goosebumps every time we sing this song because I feel so connected to my homeland while we’re singing. The words in the song we’re singing are extremely relatable to what our homeland is going through at the moment, and I’m very grateful to be able to sing this song at our cultural night.”
Are you excited about it?
A: “I am actually very excited! I have loved cultural night ever since I was in 9th grade, and I just feel so connected to my classmates at cultural night. The anxiety of waiting to perform but also being excited at the same time is the best feeling. Having fun with my friends while waiting to go on stage, the laughter, and all of our nerves combined seeing our parents in the audience is the best feeling.”
What do you think is the importance of cultural night?
A: “The importance of cultural night in my opinion is simply keeping our culture alive and showing the world that no matter what is happening to our homeland, we will still keep our culture alive and celebrate what needs to be celebrated. We are currently living in sad times, but I think that it’s so very important to keep doing cultural night and keep our culture alive through our generations and young students.”
1. What inspired you to want to become a teacher?
The opportunity to work with brilliant young students and help mold our future generation of thinkers and lifelong learners inspired me to become a teacher. I feel very fortunate to teach, because I get to do what I love to do on a daily basis. It ceases from becoming a work or a chore, and students pick up on that passion and energy and in turn enjoy listening to what you have to say.
2. What is your favorite part about teaching?
My students would definitely be my favorite part of teaching. I love to see the world through their eyes, and in turn learn from them. I love seeing them grasp concepts and share the stories we read with their parents and peers once they step outside of the classroom setting. Seeing them return after graduation and share their success stories is always encouraging. In the end, knowing that “you” in some minor way have left an impact on the growth of an individual is a very rewarding feeling.
3. What about being an English teacher stood out to you?
The love of reading at a very early age drew me personally to literature. From works of Jane Austen to Shakespearean plays and epics from Greek Mythology my fascination and interest in literature intensified over the years and led me to teaching English literature as a profession.
4. What's one tip you would give students to get through high school/college?
The UNCF slogan “The mind is a terrible thing to waste” comes to mind. The brain is the most powerful organ you have in your body. Nurture it by reading, just like you nourish your body with food when you’re hungry. Practice self discipline and self control. Do not procrastinate and leave tasks to the last minute. Practice healthy study habits and work ethics. Do what you love to do. These last few years of high school are there for you to reflect and find out what you're good at. Find your passion and share it with the world.
5. What's one thing you do in your classes to keep students engaged?
To help keep students engaged, I do a lot of hands-on activities. From transforming stories into board games to re-enacting their favorite scenes from Romeo & Juliet students learn best when student centered learning is taking place and they apply concepts, synthesize, design, and create content.