Inspiring Our Littlest Lions
Almost every school day, you will find Susan Dodgion and her Transitional Kindergarten students exploring something new about TCS. “In Transitional Kindergarten, we like to stop and explore things in a lot of detail,” she says. “The students always enjoy discovering new things.”
Susan is a native Floridian who has 10 brothers and sisters. “My parents had a beautiful spirit and taught us many of life’s lessons by their example,” she says. Susan attended St. James Catholic School and Bishop Moore High School, and graduated from Orlando Junior College and Rollins College. “Most of my extended studies were provided by Florida Southern College,” she says. “When not teaching, I love working in my yard, spending time with my family and walking.”
“This is my 49th year of teaching God’s little people and I never tire of this wonderful calling that God chose for me,” says Susan. “The longer I remain in the classroom working with children, the more I love it. I began practicing being an educator with my younger brothers and sisters. We would play school, perform plays and shows and have choir practice. Since I was the oldest daughter in the family I would usually be the teacher.
“Schools that I have taught at include St. James, Immaculate Heart of Mary in Atlanta, GA, The Weekday School, Lake Highland and The Christ School. I taught first and second grade, spent a little time in fifth grade during my initial days in education and was challenged to teach a non-graded program in Atlanta, GA for 2 years. My very favorite place to be is Kindergarten and Transitional Kindergarten! The ‘Grandmother Spirit’ in me leads me to consider myself as an advocate for little ones,” she says.
“There are so many wonderful opportunities offered to us as teachers,” says Susan. “We learn something new every single day and we grow to love many special children and families. It is really exciting to witness the friendships that are formed in the classroom and to see our 5 year-old students grow to be teenagers and adults. I am always so grateful when I run into a former student who is now a grown up. It is usually the smile or the eyes that lead me to recognize them. One of the treats of being a longtime teacher is that I sometimes am able to teach the children of my former students, and that is so fun!”
“Our best part of the school day is Centers time. That is when imaginations run wild, Masterpieces are created and our little friends participate in their very favorite activities. True friendships blossom and strengthen during these times,” she says.
Susan continues, “It has always been my privilege to teach in a private, independent or parochial school where we are free to and encouraged to learn about God, sing about God, and worship God. I cannot imagine being in a classroom where we could not weave Him throughout our day. The Christ School offers us a family who joins with us in our journey of faith and a safe port in the storm during fearful or trying times”
Susan shares her favorite Bible verse: “My favorite verse in the Bible comes from Isaiah 40:11
Like a Shepherd He feeds His flock;
in His arms He gathers the lambs,
Carrying them in His bosom, leading the ewes with care”