From Teacher to EdTech Coach: 8 Questions with Chris Aviles
8 QUESTIONS is a series of interviews with teachers who have effectively transitioned their classroom skills into new and exciting careers in the field of education. We at Teach.com believe that teaching is a rigorous and diverse classroom in and of itself; the skills learned “in the trenches” can translate into an exciting portfolio of professional options. From education tech to consulting, the only “X factor” is where you want to go — our interviews hope to shine a light on the steps it takes to get there.
1. What’s your name, location, current profession?
Chris Aviles EdTech Coach for Fair Haven school district in Fair Haven, NJ.
2. Where did you earn your teaching certification(s) and where did you go to school (for bachelors/MAT/EDD/etc.)?
I went to St. Joseph's in Philadelphia for my undergrad and teaching certificates. I'm currently enrolled in Boise State's Educational Technology Masters program.
3. How long were you a teacher for?
I taught high school English for ten years.
4. What was the most rewarding part of being a classroom teacher? What about classroom teaching did you find most challenging?
I loved working with my kids. We built great relationships and I enjoyed seeing them everyday. The most challenging part about being a teacher is the politics. Whether on the community, state, or national level, it seems everyone is pushing an agenda and the last thing a teacher gets to do is teach.
5. Why did you decide to transition from classroom teaching to your current profession?
I was offered an opportunity at a new district to not only continue to work with students in the classroom, but also work with teachers as well.
6. What is the best part of your current job?
Still working with kids! I get to help run our school's student Innovation Labs which is a lot of fun. Working with teachers has been great, too. I love showing teachers ways that EdTech can make their lives easier.
7. What skills did you gain from classroom teaching that have allowed you to excel in your current profession?
Having been in the classroom, I think I bring a certain practicality to what I show teachers. I know what I show works because I've used it in the trenches for years. When teaching technology, being patient is important, too. No one is more patient than a teacher.
8. What advice would you offer a current teacher who is looking to make a career change to outside of the classroom?
If you can teach, you can do anything. Your ability to build relationships will serve you well in any profession. The resourcefulness you've developed over a career of reaching every student will pay dividends in your new job. You can do it!
READ MORE FROM THIS SERIES:
8 Questions with a Curriculum Specialist: Glenn Wiebe
8 Questions with a CEO: Kelly Tenkely
8 Questions with a Principal: Jeff Herb
8 Questions with a School Counselor: Andrea Burston
8 Questions with an Instructional Coach: Angela Watson
8 Questions with an Ed Tech PhD Student: Scott Haselwood
Looking to make a career leap of your own? A doctorate of education (EdD) can help bridge the gap. Click to learn more.