Teacher Assistant of the Year
Langebeck has been with the Wake County Public School System for three years and said she approaches her job by trying to make the school a place where her students can be themselves.
“I treat the children like they were my own children, and treat them how I’d want to be taught,” Langebeck said. “I’m an aide with their writing and learning but I’m also an aide for emotional needs. I’m there for both.”
Langebeck, who works with 1st Grade students, said she thinks there are misconceptions of what a teacher assistant does and each day is very different for her.
“People think it’s just clerical but I work with the students one-on-one and help with group concepts,” Langebeck said. “Every day, I try to make life as easy as possible for the teacher.”
Giving students that support is important now, Langebeck said, as the demands on students are higher now than when she was a student.
“The things I learned in 1st Grade are now what students have now. There’s more of a demand in the classroom now,” she said. “1st Grade’s a hard grade.”
Connecting with Students
When Langebeck learned she was Wake’s Teacher Assistant of the Year, she said it surprised her.
“I remember, that morning, we had a staff meeting and I told our principal I wouldn’t win,” she said. “But I work with an amazing team. I don’t know why I got it and others didn’t.”
Langebeck said her approach to the classroom is to make sure she can build a relationship and a trust with the students, who at a young age she said are guarded at first.
“You have to show them who you are and show them you’re there for their best interest,” she said. “But it goes both ways. If they know about my life, then I seem more relatable.”
Carpenter Elementary School is located at 2100 Morrisville Pkwy.
Story and photos by Michael Papich.