Hello, my name is Crystal Santana. I was born and raised in the Dominican Republic. My earliest education was completed there. I came to the United States when I was in 11th grade. It was challenging to adjust to a new country due to the language barrier. After graduating from high school, I attended Bronx Community college and graduated with an Associate in Arts degree in early childhood education. I continued with my education at Lehman College, and in 2019, I graduated with a bachelor’s degree in Sociology with a minor in Early childhood. I’m pursuing a master’s in early childhood education with a Bilingual Extension. My goal is to become a bilingual educator. As an educator, I aim to facilitate my students’ academic development and embrace their uniqueness as learners. I want to be part of their early development as I enjoy working with that age group because I like to see them learn and grow. After reading the habits of mind, I would work on three habits:

  • Managing impulsivity
  • Communicating with clarity and precision
  • Listening with understanding and empathy

I believe that working on those habits will help me become a better communicator, create deeper connections with others, and help me make better decisions. All these habits combined will ultimately make me a better educator.

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July 31, 2022 2:45 pm

Dear Crystal:

I am excited by your Habits of Mind Bio, “My Biography,” because you connect the significance of the Habits of Mind with both your future learners and yourself. 

One sentence you wrote that stands out for me is: “As an educator, I aim to facilitate my students’ academic development and embrace their uniqueness as learners.” I think this is moving because your mindset acknowledges the balance that comes with educating our youth. Not only that, by truly understanding the special elements of each of our students, they feel seen and respected for who they are. It shows how much you care for their success and how you initiate trusting relationships.

Another sentence that I appreciated was: “All these habits combined will ultimately make me a better educator.” This stood out to me because, as teachers, we model what we hope for students to learn. By recognizing that the Habits of Mind live within us as educators, we can fine tune our understanding with our personal experiences to better understand how we can guide and lead students to use these ideas to better understand themselves. In my opinion, by seeing the Habits within ourselves and working towards the habits we strive to develop, we become more experienced at this to mentor our learners. 

 Have you seen this video: Funds of Knowledge?  I thought you might be interested in this because Luis Moll begins to explain the role that gaining information about our students’ lives plays. He mentions teachers identifying those elements about themselves as well. His ideas seemed to connect with both of the major points I mentioned in your bio.

Thanks for your writing. I look forward to seeing what you write next because it is engaging to hear how you integrate ideas to draw strong and insightful conclusions.


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