Who/what inspired you to enter into the education field? 

The one thing that inspired me to enter into the education field was while working as an adult education teacher with the Even Start Program at Corbin Independent School District. Every adult in the program struggled with math. That inspired me to return to school and earn my elementary education (K-5) certification. I wanted to help students in those grade levels so they would not struggle in math as grown-ups. I have learned over the years in education each subject taught is important and the enjoyment that comes with helping students learn is what matters.

Tell us about your family? (children, pets, etc) 

I will be married to my husband Darrel for 32 years in March 2023. He works for Boyd Cat (formally Whayne Supply) in Corbin, Kentucky and has been with the company for 40 years. We have one son named Derrick who works in hotel management. The only pet we have is a cat named TigerLily who is 5 years old and is the master of the house. We have lived in Corbin, Kentucky for the last 25 years.

What is your Teacher Leader Mission? YOUR WHY in the classroom? How do you #LeadTheCHARGE daily? 

My TEACHER LEADER Mission is to make a difference in the students life’s in my classroom. This might be just saying hi and giving them a hug, asking how their day is, or just taking a moment to find out how they are doing. Taking that extra time to let students know that I care about them as individuals and value them each and every one is how I LeadTheCHARGE daily in my classroom. In this world, there are so many students who just need that one person to show that they care.

What is one attribute of leadership that you think is critical to possess as a Teacher Leader? Why? 

One attribute of leadership I think is critical to possess as a Teacher Leader is a leader with ethically. Being a leader that if you say one thing people know they can take you at your word and you’re not going to do another thing. Also a good leader takes responsibility if they make a mistake and doesn’t blame others. A leader is willing to change and go with the flow. A leader makes people they encounter feel important and valued.

What are ways that you engage families as part of the learning in your classroom/school? 

Ways I engage families as part of the learning in my classroom is using Class Dojo. Students are able to put pictures of things they are doing in the classroom for family members to see. I also send newsletters home to families so they know what students are learning for that week in different subject areas. In the newsletters, I provide activities parents can do with their students which provides extra support in learning.

What “fingerprint” or lasting impression do you want to leave at your school or on your students? 

The lasting impression I hope to leave is that I cared about each of them as individuals and believed in their ability to grow and learn. To know that I made a difference in their lives in some way and they became a better person by being in my classroom.

How do you maximize the strengths of those around you? 

One way I maximize the strengths of others around me is, letting them know what I see as their strengths and letting them apply the strength in whatever we’re doing. Sometimes students don’t see or know what strengths they have in a subject area being taught. Letting them know they have abilities to master things is sometimes all it takes to help them become proficient in something. Also encouraging students to act as mentors to help others use their talents and strengths more fully. I’ve seen students who were quiet and shy become leaders in helping other students.

What do you like most about teaching? 

The thing I like most about teaching is my students in that I get to help them learn and build relationships with them. I like interacting with them, and learning from them. I like helping them understand the content of any subject area and when they see the connection between what they are learning and their lives. Seeing a students eyes light up when they begin to understand something which has been hard for them. Guiding young minds and showing love each day. One thing I like about teaching is having students come and visit or send me a message. It doesn’t happen every day, but when it does it makes my day. It’s gratifying to know that I made a difference in their life’s.

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