How did you get into teaching? What made you want to pursue this career?
I've always had an interest in teaching. There are many teachers in my family, so I grew up around the profession. I first fell in love with teaching in the summer of my sophomore year in high school. I volunteered at Queen Emma Preschool and by the end of the first day, I knew that teaching was for me! I continued to volunteer and eventually became a substitute at QEP for the next three summers.
What is your favorite part about teaching?
My favorite part about teaching is the fact that I have the opportunity to make a difference in these young people's lives. Each of them has different strengths and areas for growth, some in the academic area while others are in the social-emotional area. We, as teachers, get to help students work through those difficult areas, while also supporting them to develop their strengths! It's an extremely rewarding position to be in!
What do you currently teach? What have you previously taught?
I am currently teaching 5th grade at The Prep. I also teach a musical theater class at 'Iolani School (this will be my fourth year) and I coach their dance team. I have been teaching summer school at 'Iolani for the past three years.
What is a current goal and/or project you are working on?
As you can probably tell, one of my passions lies in dance. I am currently working on researching the effects of movement in the classroom on focus and motivation. There is much compelling research stating that movement can help students to focus on their academics and that incorporating movement can create interest and motivation. I hope to eventually complete my Master's Thesis on this topic.
What is the best part about teaching at St. Andrew's Schools?
The best part about teaching at St. Andrew's Schools is how welcoming the community has been. The support that I get from this school is unbelievable! I can approach any one of my colleagues with a question or concern and they are all more than willing to help!
Who or what inspires you?
My family is my inspiration. My husband and my son support everything I do without hesitation. They inspire me to be the best version of myself in and out of the classroom. I know that I wouldn't be where I am now without their love and support.
What is the best advice someone has given to you? Who was that person?
"Don't be afraid to make mistakes. Every teacher falls flat on their face time and time again. Learn from those mistakes. Ask for help. Try and try again." While I was in my student teaching, my mentor teacher gave me this advice as I was preparing to do my solo teaching. This has stuck with me everyday since she spoke these words to me. These words help me to remember that I don't have to be perfect for my students, but to work to improve every single day.
What is your wish for your students?
My wish for my students is that they use their own strengths and interests to enhance their learning and to create intrinsic motivation. I also wish for each of them to gain confidence in their self and their own abilities.
What is one interesting thing people may not know about you?
I have watched every season of "Friends" countless times. I know the show so well that I can quote every line and catch every reference that I'm given.
What do you enjoy doing in your free time?
Spending time with my husband and my son. We usually like to go to the playground, to the pool or to the movies! By myself, I enjoy watching shows on Netflix!
Tell us about your family.
My son is in the four year old class at Queen Emma Preschool. He loves to play soccer, go swimming and sing and dance Disney music! My husband is pursuing a career in Neuroscience and he currently works at the John A. Burns School of Medicine. We have been together for eight years and we hope to eventually have two more children.