Today’s Lawyers Changing the World feature is on our first classroom teacher with a legal background. Check out how Rachelle Dene Poth’s legal training has helped her push students to think critically in foreign languages and #STEAM.

WHAT IS YOUR MISSION AND WHAT DO YOU DO?

I teach French and a course in STEAM: What’s Next in Emerging Technology at Riverview Junior Senior High. I enjoy attending and presenting at EdTech conferences, especially when I have students presenting. I am a regular blogger for Getting Smart, Kidblog and DefinedSTEM, and an author, and have collaborated on several Education related books.

WHAT INSPIRES YOU TO DO THIS WORK?

I have always loved learning, pushing myself to do more and to seek opportunities that can be of benefit to others. The excitement of being a teacher, having the chance to make a difference, to share my love of learning and to learn and grow with the students is my inspiration.

HOW DID YOUR LEGAL TRAINING AND/OR LAW SCHOOL EXPERIENCE PREPARE YOU TO TACKLE THE SIGNIFICANT ISSUES YOUR ORGANIZATION IS TACKLING?

I studied French and Spanish, and through my courses in legal translation, I developed an interest in law. I decided to take the LSAT and then apply to attend Duquesne School of Law, evening program, so that I could continue to teach full time and attend law school. Having the law school experience has given me a greater understanding of what it means to be a teacher, a mentor and the value of lifelong learning. The true purpose in education is to work to become a better version of yourself and to have knowledge and passion for learning to share with others. I believe that having the different experiences has prepared me for challenges that may arise, I can problem solve better, I am able to understand different perspectives and help students to see multiple perspectives as well. We need to prepare students for the future, and we do not know what the jobs will be, so we need to help inspire lifelong learning, to help students take some risks with learning and try new things, because we do not know exactly what to prepare students for, but we can open the door to possibilities for them to explore many different directions.

Being an attorney helped me to better understand the student experience again, how to push through struggles in my own learning and build my own problem solving skills. It also helped me to become a better mentor, as I learned from my law school mentors and colleagues.

To learn more about Rachelle Dene Poth follow her on twitter!


To learn how your school or organization can adopt thinkLaw’s standards-aligned program that helps educators teach critical thinking to all students, please click here to schedule a time to speak with someone on the thinkLaw team, call us now at (702) 318-7512 or join us on our next webinar; Thinking Like a Lawyer: Power Strategies to Teach Critical Thinking to All Students

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