Education: Bachelor of Art in Education/Biology/Math, University of Kentucky/Texas Women’s University
Length of time teaching: 41 years
How do you feel you can help students to “Start Here. Go Anywhere.” ?
I feel that by assisting them with their math concerns, I can help them feel more confidant and positive about math, which will eventually help them as they continue on their journey through higher education.
What is the most important life lesson you want a child to learn in your classroom?
The most important life lesson I hope to teach to a child is that nothing is impossible…..somethings just seem impossible. With a little hard work, help and perseverance, we can achieve things that once seemed impossible.
What experiences or people have had the most influence on you?
The people that have inspired me the most as a teacher were other teachers. I have often had the opportunity to observe teachers, as a biology and math teacher, a department head or even as a math coach. Interacting with other teachers, listing to their ideas and how they present a particular topic or deal with a particular situation in the classroom has been a wonderful influence on me with my own teaching techniques. On the days when you think you are doing nothing right, someone during lunch or in the faculty room, shares a story that allows you to realize we are all in the same boat. It is truly a wonderful comradery
What do you love about teaching? And/or teaching at HT?
The thing I love most about teaching is the “aha” moments. Those are the times when that one student comes in to you one day and says…”I get it”. Often a student has struggled and worked on a particular subject or concept and seemed truly lost. Then one day they walk into your class and you see it on their face…they “get” it. Being a part of that is the best feeling in the world.
What do you want your students to gain from having known you?
I hope the students I work with will go away at the end of the year feeling more confidant in their math skills. I hope they realize my job here is to help them by teaching them how to help themselves. And I also hope they understand and realize that I truly want them to be the best they can be.
What are your hopes for your program/discipline at HT?
I hope this program continues to grow. I feel so fortunate to be a part of something that is so beneficial to students who are needing assistance. I see it continuing to evolve. We are only into the second year and I can see how it has grown and become stronger. It reaches out to students in so many areas. We still have a few glitches to work through and we continue to do so. It’s in fixing the glitches that we make the program so much better.
What has been your most memorable moment in teaching?
As a teacher, I look back and feel fortunate that often my students have come back to visit or share with me how they are doing. And often the ones that come back are the most surprising. Recently, a student that I had taught in AP Biology was giving his Valedictorian speech. He was an excellent student, did very well in my class but I did not see him as a student that I had a really close relationship with or that I had had a significant impact on his school life as a senior. I was very surprised to hear him reference me as someone who had helped him “keep it together” during his senior year.
Why am I still in teaching?
I ask myself this question often. I retired at the end of the 2015-2016 school year. I told myself I was going to travel, read books and sleep without waking to an alarm. I made it through the summer…that seemed normal. Then in August, when all my teacher friends went back, I knew I was really going to enjoy this thing called “retirement”. The end of August came and I received a call for help. A math teacher at a friend’s school quit and they needed help. I said okay…but only for three weeks. I had a cruise to go on. Then, after the cruise, another call for help. A biology teacher had quit at another school. I helped out for a month. I had other plans already in place until after the first of the year. Then the first of the year came….where was the next distress call? I decided to reach out to another school to see if they might need me. I came up to Holy Trinity and asked to sub. I was thrilled they were interested because they were so close to home and I had already begun to realize I missed the interaction with the students and other teachers. Well, a little while later in the day, Holy Trinity called me back. They wanted me to come in the next day to discuss a new role they were implementing in the junior high program. To make a long story short (well, a little short) here I am today. I love working with students, the faculty, and administration. It’s the perfect job for a retired teacher…I get to work with small groups of students. There are no papers to grade, or lesson to make out or conferences with parents. The best part, I feel I am still getting to do something I love!