I taught for 39 years and was not looking to retire, but a job change and move for my husband ended my career as i knew it. I taught K-12 art, 7-12 English, Advanced Placement English, ELL and speech and journalism both on the high school and college levels. I worked for 10 years on creating standards and benchmarks and on curriculum development and continue to write and speak professionally on teaching methods, classroom management, assessment, diversified learning and student-centered learning.
I have long followed the philosophy of Confucius, 500 BC, who said "I hear and I forget; I see and I remember; I DO and I understand." Only when we step away from the lectern and allow students to discover and share, will they learn and remember. Education is not memorizing; it is critical thinking and problem solving. With those skills a child will succeed in any endeavor; be it higher ed, a vocation or life skills. I have a handmade poster on my wall that says the 3 C's are integral - Critically thinking, Comprehending, Communicating.
In education I was honored twice in the last five years for national recognition: the first was the Coca-Cola scholarship Distinguished Educator Award, presented to me after being nominated by one of my students who won that scholarship and is now studying at Harvard. Another student nominated me for a comparable award, naming me her Most Influential Teacher. She has just completed her undergrad at Stanford and has earned a scholarship to work on her masters at Yale.
The use of technology is vital, I believe, for students to be able to compete in the job market, so I incorporate technology into nearly every lesson I teach. I also suffer from CAPD and understand that an alarming number of students do as well, so every lesson I prepare is prepared as a visual (Power Point, iMovie, etc.) so students not only hear, but see the lesson. I also am a firm believer in the teaching of vocabulary skills in order to be a better reader with a more profound ability to comprehend.
I am the mother of three sons, one of whom is also an English teacher; one coaches baseball in Europe; the other is a corporate fitness manager. My greatest joy is being grandmother to three little boys. I am married and, after living in North Dakota for 60 years, now live in Washington DC.