How long have you been teaching?
Why did you choose to teach as a career?
When I was a senior in high school I participated in a reading program at an elementary school once a week. I spent time each week reading with second graders. It was magical. At the end of the program, I decided that being a teacher sounded like the coolest way to spend my life. I have never looked back!
Many people question if our current education system is working. What do you think?
I don’t hear that often. Probably because I try to ignore negativity whenever possible. Do I think the system is perfect? No. Nothing is perfect. We can always do better. I think part of the problem is we don’t do a good enough job sharing all the amazing things happening in our classrooms. The more we share, the more people will see that school is a pretty special place.
What would you like to see being taught in our classrooms?
It is hard for me to answer this sort of question because I don’t know everyone’s students. I know that my students love creating. Give them a box, some tape and some time and they will make something amazing. Give them an iPad, an audience and time and they will make a killer video. My kids love to create. I need to make sure that I am creating an environment where they can explore that desire.
If you have been teaching for over ten years, describe the changes you’ve seen in students and the teaching profession?
Kids are kids. Their clothes change, their favorite cartoons change, but they don’t seem to change all that much. They just want to be loved, challenged, and inspired.
Share your proudest teacher moment.
I had a student this past year that hated reading. By the end of the year, he loved it. That may not be the fanciest story, but it is what I feel like I was put in the classroom to do. If a kid falls in love with reading, they can do anything.
What is the most important message about teaching that you would like People to know?
Teaching is the best job in the world. Don’t be jealous because we have summers off, be jealous that we get to spend time learning and growing with kids.
How can parents and Educators work together to better to ensure children are successful?
Face to face communication. Email is nice. Social media is fun. Newsletters and Text messages work too, but nothing can replace sitting down and talking with the parents of your students. We need to find more opportunities to do this.
What is the most important educational gift parents can provide for their children to help them be successful learners?
Buy them lots of books and don’t put a television in their bedroom.
Who is most Inspirational Teacher you’ve had? Why?
The most inspirational teacher that I ever had was probably Mrs. Mierzwa. She told me I was a good writer and that my work had a great voice. I’ll never forget when she said that. It was the first time that I actually thought of myself as a writer.
How many hours a week do you spend completing all of your duties related to your job. Are there any extra duties that people may find surprising or not consider that you have to complete?
I try not to think about how much I work. All the things that I do, are things that I love to do, so it rarely feels like work.
What do you think is a fair salary for teachers? Keep in mind the argument that celebrities make millions and teachers are always struggling?
I’m not really sure. I know that if we were paid a lot more, you’d get people in the profession that were in it for the wrong reasons.
Have you ever paid for supplies for your classroom?
Every. Single. Week.
If you had a wish list of needs for your classroom what would the top three things be?
-GoPro Karma Drone (students news team)
-Money for field trips
-More books! You can never have enough books
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