Tyler Pentland talks sports, coaching, and stepping up to the plate to pursue Education at UBC Okanagan
June 8, 2018
Alumnus (Class of 2018)
Bachelor of Education (BEd)
Okanagan (Kelowna, BC)
Bachelor of Education (2018)
“I loved helping kids to realize their full potential.”
AFTER PLAYING AND COACHING SPORTS for a number of years Tyler Pentland’s decision to pursue university studies in education was a natural one.
“I developed a leadership role at a young age,” says Pentland, “and I became interested in teaching when I was playing sports.”
Pentland, who grew up in Ladner, BC, grew up active and engaged with the community in sports such as baseball, basketball and soccer. His family encouraged him to try coaching.
“I loved helping kids to realize their full potential,” Pentland says, “and those skills I taught them in sports translated into skills they brought to their school work.”
While taking Psychology courses at UBC Okanagan, Pentland decided to volunteer for Dr. John-Tyler Binfet’s School Kindness Study in Okanagan schools. While working with the students, Pentland made the decision to continue his studies at UBC Okanagan and apply for the Bachelor of Education (BEd) program in the elementary education stream.
“Working with Dr. Binfet and learning from him was a tremendous opportunity—it made me want to continue my studies at UBC Okanagan.”
IT’S ALL CONNECTED
Since starting the BEd program, Pentland has noticed that for the students he’s worked with—and for himself—connecting lessons learned in the classroom with real-world situations helps develop understanding.
“When I was helping a child learn math, he asked if it was OK that the measurements didn’t add up. I asked him if it would matter if we were building a house and the house measurements didn’t add up,” he says.
“Seeing that aha moment on his face and the connection he made was incredible. He realized that what he was learning wasn’t just for school.”
Pentland knows a thing or two about building houses. Back in 2014, he and his family and a team of seven other Habitat for Humanity members helped build a house in San Cayetano, Nicaragua. The team brought three suitcases of donations for a local school.
“The school invited us with open arms,” Pentland says. “They were so appreciative of the supplies and the children were so excited to show us their work, it made me realize that it doesn’t matter where you live, we’re all connected by our desire to learn.”
PREPARING FOR THE FUTURE
As Pentland enters his next and final year in the BEd program, he’s looking forward to presenting his research during the Guided Reflective Inquiry Presentation (GRIP).
The GRIP event allows students to showcase their work, while also preparing their portfolio for post-graduation career opportunities.
“I have already started to think about and research GRIP topics, and how I can showcase what I’ve learned during the program,” he says.
Reflection has been one of the most surprisingly helpful elements to Pentland’s learning. During the practical experience in schools, students are asked to keep a reflection journal about their time in the classroom. Pentland, who admitted to not really thinking much of the idea at first was amazed by how invaluable the process was in the end.
“The concept of reflection is constantly being stressed by instructors in the program,” he says. “We’re encouraged to look at practice and question how it worked, if it didn’t work, why it didn’t, or would it work differently on another audience.”
As Pentland continues connecting and reflecting during his graduating year, he looks forward to learning more while creating and expanding his teaching practice.
—by Jill Dickau