Fairfield Ledger
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Mt. Pleasant News   Wash Journal
Neighbors Growing Together | Aug 19, 2018

Welcome Fairfield’s fresh crop of teachers

By Andy Hallman, Ledger news editor | Aug 06, 2018
Brianna Folsom

In about four weeks, Fairfield youngsters will don their backpacks as they return to the classroom.

They’ll notice a few new faces when they get there, but fear not! The Ledger is giving the community an opportunity to meet the new teachers in the district. Included in today’s edition of The Ledger is our “Back to School” special section, which includes photos and questionnaires from the new hires.

We begin with Pence Elementary School third-grade teacher Brianna Folsom.

 

Brianna Folsom

 

1) Where are you from?

I’m from all over the place! Mostly in Iowa, but I have lived in Wisconsin, North Carolina and Virginia.

2) Where did you go to high school and college?

I graduated from Oelwein High School in Oelwein, Iowa. I then graduated from Hawkeye Community College with my Associates and then continued on to Wartburg College in Waverly, Iowa with my Bachelor’s.

3) What were your favorite subjects in school and why?

My favorite subjects were science and yearbook. I’ve always enjoyed science and doing experiments to figure out how things work. I also love doing anything hands on, which inspires a lot of my teaching style. I loved designing the yearbook. Some of my favorite pages to design were prom, the FFA page, and homecoming.

4) What kind of a student were you? Were you closer to being a class clown or the teacher’s pet?

I would say I was in between the two. I liked to joke around, but I also wanted to get something out of each class.

5) What extra-curriculars and hobbies did you participate in growing up? What about your favorite hobbies now?

Growing up, I participated in FFA. I was the Chapter Reporter for two years, and did a lot of competitions. I hold my State Degree, and had a shot at my American degree but was too busy with college.

I enjoyed working in our school’s greenhouse and also participated in choir for a few years, softball, and track and field.

Now my hobbies include fishing, photography, taking my dog Pete on adventures, and crafting and painting.

6) What are you planning to teach this school year?

My goal this year is to do as much cross-curricular lessons and activities as I can. I also have an awesome collection of books, so I plan to do a lot with independent reading and student-driven goals for improving reading.

7) Do you think of yourself as a strict, no-nonsense teacher, or one who likes to crack jokes?

I would say I’m more of a fun, joking teacher. I like to create a comfortable classroom environment where kids can be themselves. If I’m strict all the time, students will think they can’t have fun or enjoy what we’re doing. Learning has to be fun, otherwise what’s the point?

8) What made you want to become a teacher?

I was actually touring Iowa State for a different major, and walked by the education department and left my tour group and fell in love with their department. I’d always considered teaching, but didn’t think I was the right fit for it. Now I can’t think of doing anything else!

 

Dee Dee Lehigh

 

1) Where are you from?

I am from the rural Oskaloosa/Eddyville area.

2) Where did you go to high school and college?

I went to Oskaloosa Senior High School, Graduated with my BA from William Penn University and recently graduated with my MA from Morningside College.

3) What were your favorite subjects in school and why?

I enjoyed math and science for the hands on approach.

4) What kind of a student were you? Were you closer to being a class clown or the teacher’s pet?

I was a serious student that worked hard to maintain good grades and I got along well with all my teachers.

5) What extra-curriculars and hobbies did you participate in growing up? What about now?

Growing up, I participated in track, yearbook, and Girl Scouts. Now, I enjoy crafting, scrapbooking, building Legos with my family, traveling to new places with my family.

6) What are you planning to teach this school year?

I will be teaching third-graders at Pence Elementary.

7) Do you think of yourself as a strict, no-nonsense teacher, or one who likes to crack jokes?

I think of myself as a structured and organized teacher.

8) What made you want to become a teacher?

I wanted to become a teacher to work with children and to make a difference in their lives. I enjoy being a positive influence on them and sharing a wealth of knowledge for their future.

 

Amanda Hostetter

 

1) Where are you from?

I was born and raised in Fairfield.

2) Where did you go to high school and college?

I attended Fairfield High School, a graduate of 2010. I completed my undergrad in biology and secondary education at Iowa Wesleyan University.

3) What were your favorite subjects in school and why?

Science has always been my favorite subject. I had amazing teachers who sparked my passion and inspired me to continue with it as a career.

4) What kind of a student were you? Were you closer to being a class clown or the teacher’s pet?

I was an average student, pretty quiet. I definitely didn’t cause trouble for my teachers, but I also was a low-key “class clown.”

5) What extra-curriculars and hobbies did you participate in growing up? What about your favorite hobbies now?

I participated in a little bit of everything at FHS. I was a football cheerleader, on dance-and-drill, speech team, a majorette, band, choir, tennis, and ASA softball. I still enjoy most of those things!

I am always dancing/singing and I love to go play tennis with my little sister. Now that I am older, I do enjoy relaxing with a book/movie or going on “adventures” with my two boys.

6) What are you planning to teach this school year?

I will be teaching Integrated Science at FHS.

7) Do you think of yourself as a strict, no-nonsense teacher, or one who likes to crack jokes?

I think the key to being an effective teacher is finding a balance between all of those things!

8) What made you want to become a teacher?

I have a passion for inspiring others, especially the youth, to set goals for themselves and pursue their dreams. As I mentioned before, I had great teachers who helped me find my passion and I want to be that for someone else.

You won’t ever hear me tell a student they can’t get to where they want to be. Instead, let’s sit down and make a plan on how to get there!

 

Heather Snook

 

1) Where are you from?

I am from Ottumwa, Iowa.

2) Where did you go to high school and college?

I went to high school at Ottumwa, graduated in 2002. I graduated from Indian Hills in 2009 and graduated from the University of Northern Iowa in 2013.

3) What were your favorite subjects in school and why?

Math was always my favorite subject because there are set rules to it and it isn’t subjective to opinion. I like that it’s either correct or incorrect.

4) What kind of a student were you? Were you closer to being a class clown or the teacher’s pet?

I was the teacher’s pet in school. I was the student that would come in before school to help the teacher prepare the room and stay after school to help clean up.

5) What extra-curriculars and hobbies did you participate in growing up? What about your favorite hobbies now?

I played softball and was in the JROTC program in high school and played video games in my spare time. Today, I spend time with my two kittens, Bailey and Wrigley, my husband, Justin, my family, and still play video games!

6) What are you planning to teach this school year?

Third grade!

7) Do you think of yourself as a strict, no-nonsense teacher, or one who likes to crack jokes?

I think of myself in the middle. I am strict in the sense where I have expectations that I expect to be followed, but like to joke from time to time.

8) What made you want to become a teacher?

In fourth grade, I had a teacher, Mrs. Miller, who was the type of teacher that celebrated every student. Some of my fondest memories in school are of helping her in the classroom before and after school and of being in her classroom.

She made learning fun and took the time to get to know each and every student. She would celebrate the personal and academic victories with each student and was always there to give support and guidance when we didn’t understand something.

I still have the ceramic snowman she gave me for Christmas for helping her out so much because she meant so much to me as a teacher. From that day on, I wanted to be like her, to help foster the knowledge of the next generation and to inspire students to become the very thing that brings them the most joy, and to do it with honor and respect … to be there when the students get their victories, but also to support and guide them when they have questions.

 

Lacie Courtney

 

1) Where are you from?

Ottumwa, Iowa.

2) Where did you go to high school and college?

Indian Hills Community College (AA), William Penn University (BA), Kaplan University (MS), Capella University (Ph. D. - in progress).

3) What were your favorite subjects in school and why?

My favorite subjects in school were math and psychology. I love to figure out problems and I love to understand what makes people think the way they do.

4) What kind of a student were you? Were you closer to being a class clown or the teacher’s pet?

I just showed up every day and did what I needed to do. Definitely not a class clown but wasn’t a teacher’s pet, either.

5) What extra-curriculars and hobbies did you participate in growing up? What about your favorite hobbies now?

Growing up we had horses and did a lot of trail riding and showing. I currently own and show Arabian horses.

6) What are you planning to teach this school year?

I will be teaching special education.

7) Do you think of yourself as a strict, no-nonsense teacher, or one who likes to crack jokes?

I believe in following the rules and doing what is expected. However, I like it to be fun and stress free!

8) What made you want to become a teacher?

I had a few really awesome teachers when I was in school. They loved their job and made it fun for everyone else. That’s what made me want to teach as well.

 

Ashley Frimml

 

1) Where are you from?

I’m from Atkins, Iowa.

2) Where did you go to high school and college?

I went to high school at Benton Community, and then attended Iowa State University for college.

3) What were your favorite subjects in school?

My favorite subjects in school were reading and history.

I loved reading because reading books was and still is one of my favorite past times. I enjoyed learning about American history. One of my favorite things to do is visit historic sites.

4) What kind of student were you? A class clown or teacher’s pet?

I was neither a class clown nor a teacher’s pet. I was actually super quiet in class.

5) What hobbies were you involved in growing up? What hobbies do you engage in now?

I was involved in football and wrestling cheerleading, marching band, show choir, and speech growing up. My hobbies now are running, reading, and watching Netflix.

6) What will you teach this school year?

I’ll be teaching sixth-grade English.

7) Are you a no-nonsense teacher, or one who cracks jokes?

I definitely like to laugh during the day! I enjoy having fun while teaching.

8) What inspired you to become a teacher?

Both of my parents are in education, and for the longest time I wanted to do something different. However, during my senior year of high school, I spent some time in my mom’s kindergarten classroom. Every day, I worked with a handful of students who needed a little extra practice with different skills.

By the end of the year, I looked back and saw the growth the students I worked with had made. The feeling of knowing I had helped make a small impact on these students’ lives was amazing. That was the moment I knew I wanted to be a teacher.

 

Brad Carlson

 

1) Where are you from?

Currently reside in Mt. Pleasant, however, born and raised in Lisbon, Iowa.

2) Where did you go to high school and college?

Lisbon High School, University of Iowa.

3) What were your favorite subjects in school and why?

Lunch and PE ... I liked to eat and am a little into sports. On a serious note: Math. Numbers make the world go round and are used in everything we do.

4) What kind of a student were you? Were you closer to being a class clown or the teacher’s pet?

Getting good grades is cool, so I always worked to get ALL of my assignments done on time, even if I didn’t always do them exactly right. Never missed the honor roll, but never got straight A’s. However, I was the class clown, though the teachers loved me “most of the time.”

5) What extra-curriculars and hobbies did you participate in growing up? What about your favorite hobbies now?

I was a gym rat. Whether it was lifting, practicing, or getting ready for the upcoming sport, I was always busy in the gym or on the field. Nobody outworked me! I played football, basketball, golf, and baseball in high school. In speech, I did individual and group improv.

Quiz bowl was always a blast. I participated in a couple of plays and choir my senior year. These days, I enjoy golfing with my son and watching him play hockey. Pickleball and working out keeps me busy.

An afternoon power nap is always “penciled in” if time permits. Probably need guitar lessons....

6) What are you planning to teach this school year?

I am excited to go to the Washington Elementary staff as a Strategist 1 teacher. I teach academic and real life lessons. Welcome to Mr. Carlson’s classroom of dynamics.

7) Do you think of yourself as a strict, no-nonsense teacher, or one who likes to crack jokes?

Both.

8) What made you want to become a teacher?

The kids. They want to learn, just have to find the best way to help them do so. Kids are the only innocence we have left, and I look forward to learning from them as they learn from me.

 

Sarah Pratt

 

1) Where are you from?

I grew up in Lemont, Illinois, a suburb of Chicago.

2) Where did you go to high school and college?

I went to high school in Lemont and I earned my Bachelor’s Degree from Illinois State University in 2017.

3) What were your favorite subjects in school and why?

Art, English, and History were some of my favorite subjects in school because they each tell interesting stories about individuals and society in a different way. Economics and government can do the same thing, and that’s how I intend to make these subjects come alive.

4) What kind of a student were you? Were you closer to being a class clown or the teacher’s pet?

I’ve always been excited about learning new things and I think that had an impact on how I was as a student. I had to buckle down for some serious classes like math, but for most of my classes I liked to keep things light-hearted.

5) What extra-curriculars and hobbies did you participate in growing up? What about your favorite hobbies now?

Growing up, I played volleyball and was active in youth group as well. My grandma taught me to bake when I was in grade school and I’ve enjoyed that ever since. Cooking, sewing, reading, and art projects keep me pretty busy these days.

6) What are you planning to teach this school year?

This year, I’ll be teaching economics and American government at Fairfield High School.

7) Do you think of yourself as a strict, no-nonsense teacher, or one who likes to crack jokes?

I love learning and I like making my classroom a place where my students can have fun learning too.

8) What made you want to become a teacher?

I had some wonderful teachers in all different classes throughout grade school, high school, and college who helped me become interested in subjects I never thought I’d like. At FHS, I hope to be this same kind of teacher to each student who walks through my door, helping them develop into lifelong learners.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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