What should folks know about Parkfield Elementary?
Parkfield Elementary students have a strong sense of community and graduate feeling that they are part of a forever family. With one teacher and one para-educator present in the multi-age classroom at all times, the low student-teacher ratio provides a unique level of individualized learning. Because of the small class size I can really get to know each student very well. I know what motivates them and incorporate their interests into my lesson plans. The majority perform above grade level in both reading and math. They take ownership of their education and are self-motivated to seek opportunities. There is no external social pressure to conform and everyone feels like they fit in; this provides a strong social-emotional platform which enables them to truly soar and focus their energy on growth. Many go on to serve in a variety of leadership roles in High School including 4H, Future Farmers of America, and the Associated Student Body, and the majority of Parkfield graduates excel academically in Middle School and High School.
How do you teach multiple grade levels in one room?
Students learn together, co-work independently, and come together to produce plays and do science experiments and art projects. Each student learns at their own pace and is supported where they are at rather than where others in their grade level might be. They learn from each other and learn from teaching one another, and learning is more meaningful because they are seeing it from different perspectives.
Tell us about some of your classroom goals
My goal is to instill a love for learning that each student will carry with them throughout their lives. We are always learning, and I continuously seek-out new ideas and methods to bring into the classroom. Teaching is not a means to an end, it is showing students an ever-expanding way of interacting with the world and their community. My goal is a multi-sensory approach to teaching: I incorporate text books and digital media into experiential lessons to support a variety of learning styles. I focus on the whole child, teaching the mind, body, heart, and soul. Pairing socio-emotional learning alongside academic work supports the kids in gaining the 21st Century skills they need to succeed, the creativity to innovate, and the consciousness to thrive.