Meet Aizlyn Alfonso!
Meet Aizlyn Alfonso!
What is your favorite part of the CSDC?
My favorite part of the CSDC is the overall community. Everyone is so friendly and warm to each other. When I talk to families, teachers, administrative staff or other TA’s, I feel like I belong and I feel like I am valued. I strive to reciprocate that and make others feel valued as well. The children are warm and welcoming and I believe that comes from the amazing community surrounding them at CSDC. When I walk into a classroom, I get a few hugs and countless excited hellos from children on a daily basis.
Describe your most memorable experience at the CSDC.
One morning in my second year at the CSDC, a lead teacher in Preschool 2 was sick. When I came in that morning, I was told that I would be the lead until the other teacher arrived. I was responsible for setting up activities for when children arrived, greeting families and signing children in, writing the morning message, leading morning gathering, and choosing provocations for after gathering. The children acted like it was any other day and didn’t seem phased by the lack of a lead teacher, probably because of the amount of time I spent in Preschool 2. When I led gathering, the children treated me as they would treat their lead teacher and were respectful and engaged. That day I realized that in just over a year, I had observed and experienced enough to feel confident and comfortable taking the lead for a short period of time. I realized that I was capable of leading a group of children and that I was valued and trusted by the teachers in Preschool 2 and the administrative staff. Now imagine what I have learned in two and a half years!
What have you learned about young children that you will bring into a career after UNH?
The most important thing I have learned is that children are capable. In Preschool 2 specifically, it’s important that children try things themselves first before having someone else do it for them. It’s important for them to know what they are capable of and what they need more practice with. In my teaching career, I hope to help create learners who try their best before saying they can’t do it. There’s nothing better than watching a child try to do something they thought they couldn’t do and seeing them so proud of themselves when they are successful. I have also learned effective means of communication and conflict resolution. It’s important to see where children are coming from and ask them how they’re feeling and why. It’s also important to be honest and open about how I’m feeling and why. This shows that I’m listening and that it matters to me how children are feeling. It also teaches children how to communicate effectively to resolve issues.
What is your major & what are your plans after graduation?
My major is Human Development and Family Studies with a child development concentration. I plan to go to graduate school at UNH as part of the accelerated master’s program to become an elementary school teacher.
Describe why you would recommend the CSDC to potential students.
Coming into college with a job was incredibly helpful in terms of finances and learning time management. However, the main reason I would recommend the CSDC to potential students is the experience. The amount of experience you get at the CSDC is more than you could ever learn in a class, because you are living it. Far more scenarios happen than a class could ever explain. It’s the perfect addition to the classes you’ll take and gives you so much knowledge to contribute. Also, as I said above, the community is so warm and welcoming. When I walk into the CSDC, I feel at home. Even the days I am there for 9+ hours don’t seem too long because of the people I am surrounded by and because I am busy doing what I love.
What other clubs/organizations are you part of on campus?
I am part of a coed a cappella group on campus called Off the Clef. We do numerous shows on and off campus and it’s really nice to have a group of friends who are as passionate about music as I am.