When I was growing up, my parents impressed upon me the importance of being a life-long learner. They noticed that my curiosity and creativity led me to seek out new information constantly. I was that kid that was always asking, "Why?" or "How can we make it better?" When people asked me what I wanted to be when I grew up, I would rattle off seven or eight things that came to mind. Each time I was asked, it was a different seven or eight professions. I couldn't seem to commit to just ONE thing - the world around me was so inspiring!! I was also a very social child, meeting new friends everywhere I went. Part of my desire to seek out new information involved learning as much as I could from, and about, the people around me. I LOVE learning about people!
When I headed off to college I left small town Dowagiac where I had grown up, and moved halfway across the world to Honolulu where I attended the University of Hawaii at Manoa, studying dance and theater. Talk about new and inspiring things to learn about! Hawaii is thick with culture different from what I knew, and I soaked it all in like a sponge.
When I came back to Michigan in 2003, I landed in Kalamazoo and began working for KRESA's Education for the Arts program. EFA sent me to schools all over Kalamazoo County where I would teach movement in their PACE and Aesthetic Education Programs. One of those schools was Kazoo School. As my first residency with PE teacher Karen Anderson was wrapping up, I knew that this was a place that I wanted to be. The warm smiles, excited children and progressive atmosphere drew me in and sparked my curiosity once more. In 2010, after 7 years of being a guest at Kazoo School, I became an employee.
Kazoo School is an amazing place to learn and grow, for children and adults alike. Students are encouraged to ask questions, and then find answers. We extend our classrooms outside and into Kleinstuck Nature Preserve as often as we can. We look to teach to the whole child, and embrace learning styles of all kinds. My hope is that I inspire that same awe and wonder that I experienced as a child - and still do!