Nineteen MSTA members were among the 35 teachers named 2019-20 Regional Teachers of the Year as part of the Missouri Teacher of the Year program through the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE). Each Wednesday, a new profile will be shared online celebrating these outstanding educators. You can see profiles of all 19 MSTA members honored as Regional Teachers of the Year in the Fall 2019 issue of School & Community.
School Building: Jefferson High School
School District: Jefferson R-VII
Grade/Subject taught: 10th grade English
Years teaching: This upcoming school year will be my fifth.
What is one of your goals for this year?
This year, I want to explore using Genius Hour projects with my honors students.
Describe yourself without using the word “teacher” or “educator.”
I am a learner.
Why did you decide to become a teacher?
I actually started Truman as a biology/pre-medicine major. After about a semester, I realized that medicine wasn’t my calling. When I reflected on the experiences I found most rewarding in high school–tutoring kids for the A+ program, coaching gymnastics at a local studio, working as a tour guide in a historic home, and volunteering at vacation bible school–the unifying factor was teaching. I chose English education because I recognized that words, when well-chosen and well-crafted, carry an enormous amount of power, and as an English teacher, I could help my students to use words for their own purposes.
What career would you like to have if you weren’t a teacher?
If I were not a teacher, I would want a career in historic preservation or museum education.
What’s your favorite book and why?
My favorite book(s) are the Harry Potter books. They are magical stories that show that even though things are difficult from time-to-time, good conquers evil and everything works out in the end.
What’s something about you that your students would be surprised to learn?
For the past 14 summers, I have played the clarinet in the Ste. Genevieve Municipal Band.