I began my teaching career by substituting for three years while my own children were young. Then I had the opportunity to fill in for a year while the local high school drama teacher took a leave of absence. During that time I taught all drama classes and directed the school plays. My next position was Language Arts teacher in a high school. I taught there for eleven years. Along with core English classes, I taught numerous electives, advised the student newspaper staff and the literary/art magazine staff. I was also department chair. I then jumped into online teaching, which I have been doing for the past six years. I now teach online Language Arts classes to 7th through 12th grade students. I write online curriculum as well as teach.
My courses are project based. I consider myself a constructivist teacher. My students get a lot of practice with writing process - I use a workshop approach with both writing and reading. I work hard to engage my students and move them in the direction of proficiency or mastery when possible. My students are always given the opportunity to revise, to improve and to grow. I consider myself more of a coach than a 'sage on the stage.'
Probably my most shining moment (recently) was when one of my students told me that because of a project he worked on for me, he decided he wanted to become an activist. He wanted to actively work for issues that he believed in - and in fact, began writing to state officials about a local issue.
I have a Bachelor of Arts in Drama and Language Arts. My Master of Arts in Teaching is in English. I have had training in a number of different educational philosophies and pedagogies, including (but not limited to): Oregon Writing Project; Walloon Institute (Literature Circles, Multi genre writing); Understanding by Design; Integrated Thematic Instruction; Cooperative Learning; Portfolio Assessment; Six Trait Analytical Writing Assessment
I grew up in Europe - my father was an educator for the Department of Defense. This has given me a real appreciation for and some understanding of cultures other than my own. Currently I live with my husband Phil, our two dogs and two cats on ten acres in the Northwest country. My three daughters and Phil's two sons are all on their own and doing well (knock on wood). We own an online antique shop - collecting toys (Phil) and inkwells (me) is one of our passions. I also am editor for the quarterly journal of the Society of Inkwell Collectors - which keeps me pretty busy.