Posted by: Amanda Clarke, Interpreter/Educator-in-training
I have always, since I can remember, wanted to teach. I graduated in 2005 with my Bachelor’s degree in Elementary Education and began teaching in 2006. I shortly realized that teaching in the classroom probably wasn’t for me. I wanted to show my students things in a more hands-on way and go further in-depth than the standard school day allowed. When my husband’s job transferred him to the Charleston area, I began to look for ways to teach outside of a classroom.
In September of this year I found a job opening at Drayton Hall as an interpreter. “If you are inspired to teach…” were some of the words that encouraged me. This opportunity seemed to come into my life at the perfect time. In mid-September I came for my interview and took part in a house tour and the Connections program. After that, I was in! I have since attended several of the education programs that Drayton Hall offers to adult and student groups and continued to follow experienced guides on their tours of the house. Each experience has given me a new appreciation of history and the history here at Drayton Hall.
When I leave Drayton Hall in the evenings, I know that I have experienced something great and have a lot of fun telling my husband, family, and friends about how much I’m growing to love the house and the grounds. I am not only enjoying discovering new things about the house, the Drayton family, and the lives of the enslaved people who lived here but also getting to interact with the wide variety of people who visit Drayton Hall each day.
As an interpreter in training I am given the opportunity to not only teach children about history and how those that lived at Drayton Hall were a part of it but I also get to share Drayton Hall’s history with our adult visitors. I have found that this type of teaching is what I believed teaching actually should be, and the perhaps the best part of it all is that I don’t have to worry about their test scores!