Rafael Martinez is the new English teacher at Granite Hills High School. Martinez’s previous job had him teaching at Valley Oak Middle School in the Visalia Unified School District.(Photo by Julia Navarrete October 30, 2012)
New English teacher Rafael Martinez is optimistic about starting a new career at Granite Hills.
Martinez’s previous job had him teaching at Valley Oak Middle School in the Visalia Unified School District.
“Teaching there presented its own set of challenges, I definitely gained a lot of knowledge and I felt like I became a better teacher because of the experience,” said Martinez.
Martinez has enjoyed his experience at Granite Hills so far this year.
“This has definitely been my smoothest and most enjoyable year of teaching,” said Martinez.
Martinez had to face many obstacles and major changes to begin teaching at Granite Hills. One major change was teaching the expository senior writing class. When he had taught writing before, it was with middle school students.
“I think that Mr. Martinez is a good teacher,” said freshman Linda Hatcher, “He has helped me a lot with improving my writing.”
Martinez is trying to prepare students for college, so he teaches them how to write as freshmen in college, rather than high school students.
“I have taught both middle school and high school students and both of them have their positives and negatives, but I think I am definitely going to stay teaching high school students because they are easier to work with,” said Martinez.
Martinez thinks high school students are more mature and sees that there is more potential for students as they become older and begin to decide what they want to do with their lives.
“When I went to take a picture of Martinez [for the Grizzly Gazette], it was a funny experience,” said junior Briana Keck, “it was kind of awkward, but he made me laugh and feel comfortable. I think he is a great new member of the Granite Hills staff.”
Although Martinez is enjoying his time at Granite Hills, he does miss the staff and friends from his old school.
“I do miss some of the staff from my old school, I was able to build some very good relations with some of the teachers there and they helped me out tremendously. I also miss some of the students that I had good relations with,” said Martinez.
Martinez is looking forward to establishing himself here at Granite Hills. He would like to stay and teach at Granite for a couple of years until he figures out the next step in his career.