In addition to teaching, I enjoy spending time with my husband of 28 years, Greg (a general contractor). We live in Shakopee and have three sons, Jacob (24), Micah (21), and David (19) – all athletes. Jake is on the golf team at Bethel University, Micah plays football for the University of South Dakota, and David is a gymnast for the University of WA. Besides teaching, my hobbies include singing (at church, weddings, and sporting events), traveling, watching movies, and reading a good book!
What do you like most about BA?
I love the small class sizes and the fact that you get to know the students so well.
Why did you get into education?
I originally went to school to pursue a vocal performance career but switched my major because of my passion for helping others. I had always enjoyed working with kids and was drawn to teaching. I realized I could still sing (without having a degree) and help students, especially those struggling, in the process.
What teacher that you had made a big impact on your life and why?
I had many teachers impact me along the way. Multiple teachers made learning fun by playing games, singing songs, and hosting special events or parties. I moved around a lot as a child, but I remember two main teachers who developed a love of reading – one from middle school and one from high school. They got excited about books, introduced me to classic authors, and made literature come alive. Then my acting teacher in high school went above and beyond in helping me succeed. She nominated me for a performing arts scholarship and even paid my way on a trip after high school. These are the experiences I reflect on as I teach kids.
What is your best advice for students at BA?
The teachers at Breakaway Academy are here to help you. Ask questions and reach out before you feel overwhelmed – no question is a dumb question.
What are your credentials and teaching experience?
I earned my teaching degree, emphasizing teaching English as a Second Language and a minor in music, from Northwest University in Kirkland, WA. With over 20 years of experience, I have taught at various grade levels (Pre-K through adult), in several places, mostly in Washington and Minnesota. During that time, I spent eight years overseas (in Costa Rica, Guatemala, the Dominican Republic, and India) teaching and serving as a missionary. I also spent 3 years as the Director of Education at Sylvan Learning Center in Chaska, MN. I speak Spanish and draw on my multi-cultural experiences while teaching. I also tutor kids from elementary through college age in test prep and remedial skills. Sharing a love of reading and literature is one of my passions, and I enjoy getting to know the uniqueness of each student.