As the World Languages Department Chair, I am very lucky to serve and work alongside the talented and dedicated teachers in my department. I am, admittedly, biased toward Latin, but you cannot make a bad choice when choosing a language to take at Westlake High School. We are fortunate to offer courses and clubs for ASL, Chinese, French, German, Latin, and Spanish. And, we have a beautiful Language Lab thanks to the generous support of our campus Parent Teacher Organization!
This is my 9th year at Westlake High School, and it is my 2nd year as the Eanes World Languages Department Chair. I delight in using modern technology in the study of ancient material, and I intentionally blend different teaching and assessment styles for the benefit of my students. Sometimes we will have traditional assessment, sometimes project-based learning. Sometimes work will be inquiry-driven, sometimes teacher-lead. I try to model the kind of work ethic and willingness to experiment & try new things that I hope to see in my students. How can I ask such things of them if I am not willing to try them myself?
Last year, I was one of the 26 teachers who piloted new Flexible Furniture. The furniture in the room is only a year old, ergonomic, and designed for collaboration and versatility. I am so excited about the opportunities for movement, flexibility, and improved student comfort! If you are curious, contact me and arrange to come join us for a class or a day and see what it is like from the inside.
I completed my second term as the President of the Armadillo Classical Society, the local organization for Classics teachers and JCL sponsors, in May of 2017. In 2015-16, I was selected as one of 70 teachers and Edtechs from around the country as a PBS LearningMedia Digital Innovator, which means that I am part of a program that connects innovative educators and educational technologists from around the country with each other AND provides free training and resources to its members and schools. It is an on-going membership, and I often present with PBS and on my own at professional learning and technology conferences. My students nominated me as an American Graduate Champion, and I was awarded that distinction as well. I belong to the American Classical League, the Texas Classical Association, the Texas Computer Education Association, the Teachers of Foreign Languages Association, and the American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages.
My professional background, prior to joining the World Languages team in Eanes, consists of 3 years of teaching middle school Latin, Language Arts, Creative Writing, Certamen, and Study Skills at St. Gabriel's Catholic School; 2 years working at the Writing Center at the University of Virginia where I did my graduate work; 1 year as a Pre-K Team Leader for Jumpstart Charlottesville; and a host of other, non-teaching employment. I earned a Master of Arts in English from the University of Virginia in 2005 (Wahoowa!) and a Bachelor of Arts in Latin & English Honors from the University of Texas at Austin in 2003 (Hook 'Em Horns!).
I live in South Austin with my husband, David, our two boys, William and Charlie, and our two dogs, Max(imus) and Jane. My husband works with instructional technology at UT, and our boys are both in Eanes. William is in 1st grade at Cedar Creek Elementary, and Carlie is at the Cedar Creek CDC. We love getting out and about in Austin, especially when the whole family -including our two big dogs- can join us, so come say "HI!" if you see us around.