If you were not a teacher, what would you be and why?
If I had not entered the teaching profession, I think I could be a chef. Keep in mind, I have never once in my life worked in a restaurant, and I’ve heard it’s very stressful work, but I certainly like to cook! Cooking is one of my favorite hobbies, and I enjoy looking up recipes that seem complicated, breaking them into manageable parts, and once finished, sharing them with others. I think cooking in a restaurant, with so many ingredients at my disposal, would be fun. I just don’t know if I could handle the kitchen stress!
Did you ever have another job other than a teacher? What was it? Did you like it?
I have had many jobs! My very first job was working on Friday nights cleaning a butcher shop in Martins Creek, PA. It was not pleasant, but my parents told me it built character. (I’m still not sure if I believe that.) My second job was working as a school custodian during the summers at Franklin Township School where my aunt was a secretary. This was a great job because I got to see the day-to-day functions of custodians, who are such an important part of keeping a school running. I was also able to listen to the radio all day, and some of my favorite songs were influenced during those couple summers as I prepared the classrooms for a new school year.
Throughout my high school and college years, I worked as a pool boy every summer. This allowed me to spend my days selling fun pool toys, using various chemical tests to check the condition of pool water, and spend many days outside. After graduating with a degree in Education from Penn State, I immediately got a temporary job with the Department of Defense in Maui, Hawaii. I actually missed my college graduation because the job started so quickly. In Maui, I supervised at-risk high school students involved in a program that helped them find and keep their first job. It was a really amazing experience, and I spent most days travelling from one location to another around a beautiful island. After moving back to the “mainland”, I was able to focus on what I studied in college, and I became a middle school Language Arts teacher. Eventually, in 2016, I really lucked out. I found myself close to home and hired as a Media Specialist right here at White Township School! This career is my favorite by far.
What was your favorite subject when you were in school?
My favorite subject in school was Journalism class. I loved writing articles for the school newspaper, especially because there were sections for comedy, satire, and photojournalism. I enjoyed the creative freedom, and I was able to push my writing outside of the standard essay structure, which was really all I knew at the time. I think this class certainly influenced my decision to focus on English / Language Arts when I pursued my degree in Education.
When not in school, what do you do for fun?
I truly believe in the concept of “play” and think that EVERYONE should have a hobby that you truly enjoy and challenges you. As I mentioned, cooking is one of mine. However, I also really enjoy recording music and have a makeshift studio in my house where I record musicians and often play along with them. During the summer, I spend a lot of time on the Delaware River with my dog, and in the Winter you can find me skiing when the conditions are right. I also recently bought an electric skateboard… so if I come to school with a broken arm, you know why. Every day is a chance to make something, challenge yourself, and be creative. I try to make sure I take advantage of that.
What music do you listen to? What is your favorite song?
I listen to music any chance I can. I like music both new and old, and my mood changes daily. Some days I really enjoy the classics, like Johnny Cash, The Zombies, and Fleetwood Mac. Other days, I listen to more recent music and love when students give me suggestions. Picking my favorite song is a tough one, and my answer would probably be different if I wrote this a year from now. I think Pet Sounds by the Beach Boys is probably the best album ever written, and seeing Brian Wilson play it in its entirety at the State Theatre in Easton was amazing. But if it comes down to just one song, I think “The Boxer” by Simon and Garfunkel is really an incredible piece of music. It has great guitar, vocal harmony, horns, and tells a better story than many books I’ve read!