I can hardly believe it has been over 20 years ago that I began my career as a high school mathematics teacher. My journey has taken me from a large public high school outside of Atlanta, GA to an international school in Zurich, Switzerland to another international school in Caracas, Venezuela (I know, right!) and now to an independent school back in my hometown of Atlanta. I have taught everything from PreAlgebra to Calculus - my favorite subject used to be PreCalculus, but Calculus is quickly taking over.
One of my main goals of teaching is to create an environment in my classroom where students feel comfortable in the space and with me. So many students do not like math or have anxiety about it that I wanted to reduce as much of that dislike and anxiety as possible. I keep my room clean, tidy, and organized. I organize my lesson plans and my website. I provide links to outside resources in case students need to watch a video of someone else teaching a topic or they just want extra practice. I avoid sarcasm when necessary. I pay attention to my tone when I am answering questions. I don't want my students to be afraid to ask me a math question even if they think it's a stupid question. I believe ALL people are capable of being successful in math. I believe students should NOT feel pressure to do math quickly. Even the best mathematicians are slow at mathematics (check out Jo Boaler's book, Mathematical Mindsets). I ask people to NEVER say, "I don't like math" or "I was never good at math." These statements give others (especially children) permission to say the same thing. And if a child *believes* he is not good at math, then he probably won't be very successful at it in school. I tell people that instead they should say, "I could have been successful at math if I had the right support, encouragement, opportunity and/or desire." By saying, "I am not good at math" you are giving math too much power over your life. Believe in yourself, you can do it.
Nominated for Teacher of the Year. Nominated for Student Faculty Award (award chosen by the senior class, given to a faculty member).
Yet to be added
My favorite classes when I was in high school were: math because it was easy for me, Spanish because I thought it would be cool to speak another language, and drama because I loved being on the stage. Being a high school math teacher was the perfect combination of the love of math and performing. Then I found out one could teaching in English-speaking schools in foreign countries! Then THAT became my dream. I started my career at a big public high school, got my master's degree, got seven years of experience and then went to a job fair for international teaching jobs. My first choice was to move to Spain because, well, Europe. But there wasn't a job for me, so I accepted the job in Switzerland. It was amazing to live there. I met a Venezuelan man there, he couldn't stay in Switzerland so he had to move back. I got a job in Caracas to be closer to him. Then I broke up with him! After a few years in Venezuela, I decided to come home. I met my husband in Atlanta, but he's a native Spanish speaker from South America! We have a son together who is bilingual! It's crazy how life turns out.