Teaching gives me the chance to do what I believe is one of the most important jobs in the world: preparing the next generation of people for what awaits them. Engaging lessons with real-world applications are what I believe motivates students to produce their best work. My philosophy is simple: making sure students have a breadth of problem-solving abilities while employing a strategy of critical thinking. My motto is: “Always demand evidence!”
While I live in Virginia now, I spent almost my whole life across the river in Maryland. I was in the class of 2005 at the University of Maryland, Baltimore County (UMBC), graduating with a Bachelors degree in history and a minor in writing. After earning my Masters in education in 2011 at the University of Maryland, College Park, I taught third grade for Montgomery County Public Schools. In 2015 I was hired for two stints as a long-term substitute for Arlington Traditional School, and in 2016, I was brought on full-time to teach fourth grade.
Two of my favorite hobbies involve the creative arts: cooking and music. I feel equally at home at a farmers’ market or an instrument/used record shop. I am also a big Washington Nationals fan and try to get to as many games as I can (to grow my bobblehead collection!). My wife and I also enjoy playing with and reading to our little boy, who was born in the early autumn of 2017.
Don’t let the title fool you: “There’s a Boy in the Girl’s Bathroom” by Louis Sachar is a wonderful book that lets the reader understand that deep down, everybody wants to be appreciated, respected, liked, and, most of all, loved. Bradley Chalkers is a fifth grade student who can’t seem to do anything right. His “best friends” are a collection of animal figurines that live in his bedroom. With the help of the new kid in class, Jeff, and the caring and patient new school counselor, Carla, Bradley starts to believe in himself, slowly but surely gaining the confidence to make friends, do better in school and grow into adolescence. Bradley’s story is not unique; it is the story of everyone trying to become a better person, even if that process takes time and effort.