Science Instructor, MS Basketball, Baseball and Football Coach
Master in Education and Special Education, College of New Rochelle, New York
B.S., Psychology and Education, Iona College
What is your fondest Pisgah memory?
There are so many over the years, but I would have to say my fondest Pisgah memories would have to be the chance I had to coach my son Ryan through all four years of high school football, basketball, and baseball. I consider myself truly blessed to have had the opportunity to spend every afternoon watching him develop and mature into a fine young man, and a Division 1 college athlete. I am equally thankful to have been able to develop the friendships I have with all of his coaches who had such a tremendous influence on him athletically, relationally, and spiritually. It has also been an amazing journey to watch the success and growth of our entire athletic program, and the development of our beautiful facilities at The PAC.
What is your teaching philosophy?
I believe that knowledge of the subject matter being taught is essential to outstanding teaching, as well as the ability to communicate that knowledge in meaningful and relatable ways. I believe that kindness and compassion are also very important attributes as I have always felt that students don’t care how much you know until they know how much you care. Planning and having a great sense of scope and sequence are important attributes as well because failing to plan often translates into planning to fail. A great sense of humor is another important attribute as it brightens the classroom learning environment and helps to keep learning fun and engaging for students. I also believe that flexibility is always important because teaching is full of unexpected surprises every day, and it is essential to have the ability to adjust your sail when you can’t switch the direction of the wind
How do you reach students?
I address a wide range of skills and abilities daily in my classroom through the use of differentiated instruction to meet the needs of all the learners. I do this by varying the way I teach. I use all modalities to present information to students and give them the ability to learn through their strengths and comfort zones. I pre-assess my students for background knowledge, provide flexible and individualized instruction, assess student progress and re-teach difficult concepts as necessary. I make sure that students in my classroom have the opportunity to work in whole group, independently, in pairs, and in small group at different times so that they have the opportunity to learn from me, learn from others, and learn from themselves. Another way I address a wide range of skills and abilities, is by encouraging children to ask questions, participate in class discussions, and through learning centers. Through learning centers, I offer a variety of skill-based activities based on various stages of Bloom’s Taxonomy. Children have the opportunity to work alone or engage in peer interactions. This provides them with the opportunity to guide their own instruction and includes higher level and enrichment activities as well. I frequently ask students questions about what they are interested in so that I can incorporate their interests into my instruction so that each child remains motivated and feels special. I also provide small group or one-on-one instruction for students needing more support so that they receive the review and reinforcement they may need to succeed.
What are your favorite scriptures?
Jeremiah 29:11: For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.
Proverbs 3:5-6: Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight.