The New Haven School
Typically serves about 30 students per week.
What made you decide to become an educator?
I decided to become an educator later in life after spending many years in retail management. After some time of soul searching and a firm understanding that I did not want to continue with my current career, I discovered that education was where I needed to be. I returned to school at the age of 28 and confirmed my new-found love for education. Working with kids is very satisfying when you know you have made an impact on someone for life.
What excites you most about being an MAF Mathematics Intervention Teacher?
As a math interventionist, it is very exciting to see the look on a student's face when they are successful with numbers, whether they are doing basic number recognition, counting, adding or subtracting.
What differences have you seen in your students since they began receiving intervention assistance?
In our first year of the MAF grant, I noticed that our kindergartners and first graders seemed to have more confidence in their application of numbers as the year went on. Students love coming to interventions because we are always using manipulatives and activities that cater to what they need. They really have fun while learning numeracy skills.
What is one, favorite story or “a-ha!” moment you’ve had with one (or more) of your intervention students? Why is this your favorite?
When I started the MIT position, I began working right away with some kindergartners who had no numeracy background at all. There was no number recognition with numerals or quantities. We started from scratch using the assessments and activities from Assessing Math Concepts and saw tremendous growth as the year went on. I was very excited to see them at the start of this school year and to learn that they were still growing with numbers over the summer. I was so excited, as this was truly a sign that what I am doing is having success!
What does the MAF and the Kentucky Center for Mathematics mean to you?
One of the truly eye opening aspects of the MIT position is how early numeracy impacts a student's abilities in math throughout their K-12 experience. A solid conceptual foundation must be established in K-2.
KCM has supported me by providing various learning opportunities throughout the school year that are beneficial to MITs and classroom teachers. The KCM also helps me keep track of upcoming dates of importance pertaining to my MAF grant.
What advice would you give to a colleague or other educator if they had never attended a KCM professional learning experience before?
If you have never attended a KCM learning opportunity, please show up with an open mind and a willingness to learn something new.
What activities, organizations, hobbies, etc. do you enjoy doing outside of work?
I enjoy doing things with my family most of all. We love to camp, play cards, board games, amusement parks, swimming, and just hanging out. I really enjoy watching my three children be successful in whatever they do.
What is your favorite pizza topping?
My favorite food is a loaded cheeseburger, but when we order pizza I like mine with black olives. Now if we are talking about dessert, ice cream and banana pudding are the only choices.
What was your favorite childhood television show?
My favorite TV show is 24 starring Kiefer Sutherland, even though it is no longer on air. I did hear of another version coming next Fall. Growing up, I never missed an episode of Dukes of Hazard or Knight Rider.
Got any good or favorite math jokes?
"The Romans didn't find Algebra very challenging, because 'X' was always 10.”
"How do you stay warm in a cold room? Go to the corner, it’s always 90 degrees!"