English teacher encourages students to build ‘voice’

Kimmy Dang
Contributing Writer

English teacher Chloe Telle has her fourth hour world literature students discuss the article “Increasing The Minimum Wage to $15” to learn how to have civil discussions.  Photo by Kimmy Dang

Majoring in business administration and programming for companies like Boeing to develop a passion in teaching, English teacher Chloe Telle combines her past experience to her current role in Webster Groves High School. 

“The one thing I do regret is not going into the field of finance… I feel like I could maybe help more people so they could understand what’s going on, because I see a whole generation where you’re asking questions,” Telle said.

Telle understood the basics of saving and budgeting by being hands-on with money since first grade. Her parents were influential in building her financial literacy and questioning others’ view on money.

Telle’s main approach to teaching English is to create reflective readers and writers. “Too often, students separate themselves from both processes and do not believe that they have anything to offer,” Telle said. 

To change this behavior Telle challenges students to question and add into conversations rather than reiterating given information. 

“That skill of adding a voice is how inventors, researchers  and future writers are created,” Telle said.

Telle is focused on teaching students to become more reflective and aware of their actions to lead to success. She teaches students how to set goals, take accountability and readjust their goals. 

Student Victoria Gray and Benjamin Brenne, read “Increasing the Minimum Wage to $15” in English teacher Chloe Telle’s fourth hour world literature class. “They were reading this article to determine whether or not it is appropriate to raise the minimum wage, especially during this pandemic.  I want to teach my students how to have civil discussions about current topics, and to use actual data and evidence to support their claims,” Telle said. Photo by Kimmy Dang

Senior Sara Yilmaz explained her experience with Telle. Yilmaz had to set personal goals about every two weeks and stay accountable to those. If needed, she would readjust those goals and continue in pursuing them

Mrs. Telle encouraged me constantly. She would push me to do my best. The notes she would leave me on my work always made me feel better about my writing and myself as a student… She would heavily praise and encourage me, while also giving me advice. I didn’t feel belittled, and I never felt like she was talking down at me,” Yilmaz said.

Extending on her teaching goals, Telle pushes students into looking through multiple literary lenses to build empathy. Letting students question their surroundings and add a voice to those topics creates future scholars. 

She made sure that we knew literary lenses were everywhere and were used by everyone we studied… She also made it a point to question one’s environment, because at a first glance, everything may be seen a certain way, but if you read between the lines, you may notice a lot more going on and around in the writing,” Yilmaz said.

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