Beth, 19, has vague but fond memories of being a young child attending Primrose School of Buford.
“I remember sitting with the teachers a lot, and they were always so sweet to me,” she says. “Very loving, very open to me having a nonsense conversation.”
Now Beth is the one on the other end of those sweet, silly talks. She’s an assistant teacher in the Early Preschool classroom at Primrose School of Braselton, about 13 miles east of her childhood school.
She teaches 2-year-olds, which is her absolute favorite age, she has learned.
“That’s the age they really start showing their own personalities,” she says. “I think they are the funniest little things that have ever been put on the earth.”
Discovering she loves being an early childhood educator has been a little surprising for Beth, who didn’t consider herself a “kids person.” From age 3 until she started teaching at Primrose in February 2022, she thought she wanted to be a veterinarian. Now she can’t imagine not working with children. She’s in college part time, studying to be a middle school teacher.
Beth might have surprised herself, but not her mom, Heather, who happens to be director of the school. Before coming to Braselton when it opened in 2017, Heather spent 15 years teaching at Buford. She has two children younger than Beth who attended Primrose, too.
“Beth is a very empathetic, compassionate person, and that’s why she works so well with kids,” Heather says. She’s been proud to see her daughter reassuring parents about dropping their children at school and reaching developmental milestones at their own pace.
And, as she points out to her daughter, 2-year-olds were Heather’s favorite age when she was a teacher, too. Both bristle at the “terrible twos” stereotype, which they feel doesn’t give these amazing little people credit for how much they learn every single day.
“To see them grow cognitively, the lightbulb clicks on, and it’s just so rewarding,” Heather says.
Beth often finds herself inspired by the toddlers’ capacity for kindness. “Seeing how compassionate they can be, it’s so sweet,” she says, sharing a recent story of a little boy falling and instantly being surrounded by several classmates who checked on him and gave him hugs.
She is taking those lessons about the importance of teaching empathy with her as she prepares for a career as a middle school teacher. “Kids that age, no one takes them as seriously as they should, and that’s why there’s a mental health crisis,” she says. “They need someone to listen.”
So for now Beth listens with interest to toddler stories about Mommy, Daddy and toys, just as her teachers at Primrose did for her, and someday she’ll listen to bigger kids with bigger concerns. She knows this much: All children need compassion if they’re going to become adults who pass it on to the next generation.
Teaching at Primrose gives you the chance to share and witness compassion every day, just like Beth. View our open positions to learn more about our full-time and part-time options.