Bienvenidos — Welcome! It is my honor to be a part of the Top Teaching blog team and to share my classroom strategies — especially in the area of teaching English language learners. Growing up in a northern suburb of Chicago, I was fortunate enough to experience a high-quality education mixed with incredible opportunities to explore the world. My mother, a K–12 gifted education teacher, fostered my dreams of becoming an educator since I was a young child. In middle school I began to learn Spanish, and traveled abroad throughout high school to immerse myself in the language and culture. After living in Mexico City, Mexico and San Sebastian, Spain, I quickly knew that I was called to be a bilingual teacher.
In 2006 I was named a Golden Apple Scholar of Illinois, which afforded me the opportunity to train alongside some of the state’s greatest educators and teach everything from high school algebra to kindergarten bilingual classes in Chicago Public Schools summer school programs. I graduated summa cum laude from North Park University in Chicago in 2009 with a degree in Elementary Education, a minor in Spanish, and endorsements in English as a Second Language and Bilingual Education. In 2015 I earned my Master’s degree in Bilingual and Multicultural Education, sparking even more ideas for how to best serve English Language Learners in our nation’s schools.
I have seven years of experience teaching and creating the very first multi-age Spanish bilingual class in the Wauconda Community Unit School District in the northwest suburbs of Chicago. As a multi-age, multilingual teacher I learned to plan, instruct, and assess with many student needs and abilities in mind. Diversity is ever-present in the classrooms across our country, with varying family backgrounds, socioeconomic statuses and religions adding to the culture of each learning community. It is my passion to help parents, teachers and administrators develop strategies to care for all students in their charge.
When I am not teaching I enjoy making jewelry, running competitively, and spending time with my crazy little family: my incredible husband Jonathan, our energetic puppy Penny, a rabbit named Lucy, and Sprinkles, our African Pygmy hedgehog. My quirky and high-energy lifestyle pours into my classroom and my teaching style. I strongly believe that learning should be fun and that students should guide their own educational experiences through meaningful activities and self-exploration. I cannot wait to share all of my ideas, resources, and undertakings with you as a Scholastic blogger. Thank you and muchas gracias for letting me share my ideas with you!
Top Teaching bloggers are paid contributors for the Scholastic Teachers website.