Jordan Fleming is a twenty-three-year-old teacher in Newark, NJ, teaching seventh and eighth grade. Born and raised in New Jersey, Jordan likes to enjoy everything the state has to offer. When she’s not in the classroom, she can be found enjoying the state’s beaches, exploring new parks with friends, or traveling into New York City from time to time. A recent graduate from The College of New Jersey, Jordan earned her Bachelor of Arts in Mathematics and has been an EdForce™ instructor for a short few months now.
Unsure of the career path she wanted to take, Jordan reflected on her past experiences. She had been tutoring math since the beginning of high school and realized how much she truly enjoyed helping others succeed. While looking for open positions in education, she came across PCG Education and quickly became involved with EdForce. PCG Education had openings in Newark so Jordan spoke to an EdForce Instructional Coach about her interest in teaching. The EdForce team then sent her credentials, such as her resume and transcript, to the top decision maker in Newark Public Schools. This individual was very impressed by her credentials, so Jordan was prepped for an interview with her EdForce Instructional Coach. Once she was offered the position from the school district, EdForce helped guide her through her licensure application. Finally, the team helped prepare her for day one in the classroom while she waited for her licensure to wrap up. Ever since, they have worked with her weekly to help with classroom management strategies, lesson planning, differentiation, classroom organization/procedures, etc. Jordan credits much of her success to the EdForce team.
“EdForce has offered enormous amounts of support and guidance with every step of the process of becoming an instructor. In fact, the team provided more support than I ever expected throughout each phase of the process. Their care makes me feel incredibly comfortable and ready to face new challenges. Being an EdForce instructor, I never feel like I am alone and my favorite part is that I always feel there is someone who I can reach out to. I am very thankful for my mentor and the rapid response times from everyone on the EdForce team.”
Since starting at Quitman Street Community School, Jordan has learned how to become a flexible teacher.
“If I see that morale is low in class one day, I am in full support of taking a short break to listen to a fun song or take a few minutes and stretch. If a certain type of instruction does not seem to be working for a class, I am willing to try other types of instruction. I am also very much open to guidance from other teachers.”
Jordan enjoys teaching children and tries to get her students to be proactive about learning. She also prides herself in trying to make a personal connection with each student and wants students to feel comfortable in her classroom. Even if the commonality between her and a student is as simple as the same favorite color, she strives to reach a common ground with everyone. She hopes to teach her students how to persevere through tough experiences while also respecting themselves and respecting others.
When reflecting on what type of instructor Jordan wants to be, she cannot help but think about her own mentors from the past.
"My favorite instructors were the ones who did more than just teach me math or biology. They helped me to realize my own potential and my own value, and passed along pieces of wisdom they had learned during their lives. From my experiences, I am able to see that small acts can make a difference.”
She strives to be as great as these influencers and wants to help people realize that they can conquer feats they once thought were impossible. She hopes that in helping her students solve math problems, she helps them believe in themselves. From there, she hopes her students have the courage to conquer other problems in their lives.
When asked how she assesses students, Jordan says she evaluates them based on their confidence when working through a problem.
“If a student is working through a problem and not giving up, that is such a rewarding experience for me to see. There are exams, homework assignments, and other graded activities, of course, but I really look for confidence and persistence. If I can teach a student to be unafraid of getting something wrong, and to keep working through hard problems, that is worth so much more than a grade letter in my eyes.”
PCG Education would like to thank Jordan for her inspiring commitment to students. We wish her the best in her teaching career and look forward to hearing stories of success.
Article written by Summer Tarpley.