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

My sister Mary because she struggled and got things mixed up. Because she struggled and I helped her, it made me study special education. After that, the students I had inspired me to develop and be my best for them.

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

I am married, we have 3 dogs and chickens that keep us busy at home. I also have 3 children and a new grandson that is exciting to watch grow.

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

My mission is to work myself out of a job. In other words, inspire my students to grow so much that they are self learners and no longer need a facilitator to help them learn.

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

Understanding is the critical thing a teacher needs. Understanding leads to patience and patience leads to growth of students. Many people think they need patience first, but it is a natural outcome of having an understanding of your students.

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

I use Facebook, email, text and phone calls to connect. We have open houses, I send pictures to parents of their child doing something great. I talk to them whenever I see them anywhere in our town to develop a relationship. That gets them involved.

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

I want them to remember that they can do anything. That they can achieve and I want them to discover their talent. The one thing they are good at and help them to build on it, whatever it is.

How do you maximize the strengths of those around you? 

By encouragement that is directly connected to what they do that is helpful. Acknowledge their strengths and appreciate them for exercising it. When you take the time to build up those around you, they naturally want to work harder and be better. That is the golden piece so often missing in education that we need to remember with students and each other.

What do you like most about teaching? 

I love the family you build by showing students true love. Helping them to realize all relationships take time and forgiveness is a part as we will all make mistakes and can learn from them. I also love when the light bulb comes on and students know themselves that they have made progress. That is the best part!!!!

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