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Top Teaching Blogger

Andrea J. Spillett

I’m Andrea Spillett. Welcome to my class! I'm so excited to share this year with you. I hope you and your students will find my lessons and activities meaningful, exciting, and fun. This is my lucky 13th year of teaching in Southern California. The name of our school is Arovista, a Spanish word meaning “view of the circle” or “view of the sky.” Several of my students’ parents went to kindergarten in the same room that I teach in. Our own sixth-grade teacher, Mr. Kercheville, was one of the first kindergartners to attend Arovista back in 1956. My class has a multicultural background and represents a diverse socioeconomic population. I feel so blessed to teach in such an innovative, creative, supportive, and accepting community.

Growing up in Detroit, Michigan, I dreamed of being the curator of a museum. It wasn’t until after finishing my undergraduate degree in history from Eastern Michigan University that I found my true calling. Backpacking through Europe for three months, I got to actually experience the places I had studied. One such place changed my life forever: the Anne Frank secret annex in Amsterdam, Holland. When I returned from Europe, I started substitute teaching, and the students in one class were reading The Diary of Anne Frank. I had the students put their books down and together we plotted out the annex. What I felt that day changed my life forever. It was the first time I experienced a sense of purpose from a job. I decided to enroll in the masters of arts in Elementary Education program at Wayne State University and to become a teacher.

My personal teaching philosophy comes from the ancient Chinese proverb that states “I hear; I forget. I see; I remember. I do; I understand.” My teaching goal is to plan exciting, interactive, hands-on learning activities that reach all of my students. I want my class to love and cherish learning through experience.

Teaching is not a job to me, it is a part of my life. I love teaching because the possibilities of what can be experienced in the classroom are endless. I want my students to have fun learning and to be proud of their achievements — and to always know how much I loved teaching them. Another way of looking at the name of my school, Arovista or “view of the sky,” is in reference to the future. I want my students to know that their future is like the sky: limitless and full of endless possibilities.

Top Teaching bloggers are paid contributors for the Scholastic Teachers website.



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Susan Cheyney