Education: Bachelor of Arts, Elementary Education, Bridgewater College; Gifted Endorsement
Length of time teaching: 27 years
Length of time at HT: 16 years
How do you feel you can help students to “Start Here. Go Anywhere.”?
First Grade is the beginning of a child’s academic career and it is important to build a really strong, solid foundation. As a first grade teacher I work to help each child to reach their full potential and find success in their academics. The skills they learn in first grade will continue to build in each grade and they will be able to go anywhere!
How do you keep current with the subject areas you cover?
Holy Trinity is a great place to work because administration is always willing to allow the teachers to attend workshops so that we can stay on top of the latest techniques, etc. in teaching. We work together to adopt textbooks that will best serve our students and workshops are always available to guide the teachers so we are able to implement a new series.
What do you love about teaching? And/or teaching at Holy Trinity?
I have taught several different grades during my years of teaching, but I always find that first graders are the most interesting and they always have the best stories to tell. They are like sponges, eager to absorb as much knowledge as you can give them. They get so excited when they know they have mastered a new skill.
What are some of your interests and passions outside of the classroom?
When I’m not in the classroom or working on school work for my first graders, I love spending time with my three children and my granddaughter. For me it is all about family and there is no greater joy than being able to live near my children. Sadly we don’t get to see my oldest son very often, but we are thankful for Skype and it helps to make us feel like we are all together.
In what professional development activities have you participated recently?
Teaching reading to first graders is a passion of mine. I recently attended a Lindamood-Bell Workshop in Orlando on teaching phonics, reading, and spelling to children. I had been intrigued with this program for years so I was delighted to finally get to attend one of the workshops. I walked away with several different approaches to teaching reading that I was thrilled to be able to use in my classroom with several of my students. It has been amazing to watch these children change the way they think about a word and be able to produce the sounds and the word by using the techniques I learned.
What has been your most memorable moment in teaching?
My most memorable teaching moment happened several years ago, but many years after I had taught this student. I taught in an inner city public school in Virginia and a student was having a difficult time learning to read. I worked with him after school for a couple of years. When he graduated from college he sent me a graduation announcement and a letter telling me that I taught him to read and that changed his outlook on school. He went on to say that he thanked me for helping him to graduate from college and that he was going on to become a Physician’s Assistant.