Degree: Bachelor of Science in Education with Reading and ESOL Endorsements, Gifted Endorsement in Progress, Early Childhood Director’s Credential
School: University of Central Florida
What is the most important life lesson you want a child to learn in your classroom?
I want students to recognize that our mistakes are discoveries and learning opportunities.
How do you apply the latest technology in your class?
After students complete their work, they may code. They are motivated to finish their work because they love the coding games. Last year, each student in our class wrote a minimum of 200 lines of code, many students wrote thousands of lines of code. One of our favorite technology games is Kahoot. It’s a fun learning game for any subject.
How do you inspire students to enjoy learning?
We celebrate the “aha” moments. You know that moment when the lightbulb goes off, and you connect the dots with something you already knew? AHA! The student writes down their aha moment in their journal, explains it to the class, and then gets to put 10 marbles in a class jar. Everyone is happy because the class is closer to earning a marble party. Sometimes a student may think they had an aha moment but they made a mistake, or someone may say, “I don’t get it, this is too hard.” When this happens, we get excited because we know we’re close to celebrating an aha moment. Students collaborate, encourage, and help each other to understand the concept. Sometimes we take a little break away from the concept but we always come back to it until AHA, they get it!
What do you want your students to take away from being in your class?
I want my students to love learning. I want them to understand a growth mindset. Every time they push out of their comfort zone to learn hard, new things, their brains are forming new connections and over time they are getting smarter. Work hard, get smart! I want them to see their struggle as an opportunity to learn and understand that they are closer to becoming smarter. As they encounter each new challenge, learn to embrace it, persist, and persevere.
If teaching was not your first professional career, what was? How did you transition into teaching? My first career was a Registered Radiologic Technologist (RRT). Then, I attended The Ohio State University and became a certified Registered Diagnostic Medical Sonographer (RDMS) and later taught Clinical and Diagnostic Ultrasound. I enjoyed the teaching aspect of ultrasound. I volunteered in my children’s classrooms here at Holy Trinity and a few teachers said that I had a natural gift working with children and they encouraged me to become a teacher. I began working as a Pre-K teaching assistant at Holy Trinity. I’ve wanted to be a second grade teacher since I was in the second grade! I am also a certified personal trainer and group exercise instructor.