I have been involved with 1ARC and its varied projects for five years. It is not surprising that I would be enthusiastic and committed to the development of 1ARC ePark Place. As you view my bio and background information, you will see how I have been inspired and prepared for my role as Director of Education.
I have been an educator by profession for 30+ years, teaching grades K-8th grade in both public and private school settings. I have been involved in the planning of innovative programs and curricula, most recently District Strategic Planning Action Team Member, for Reed Union School District (Tiburon, CA). While working for RUSD, I was Character Education Program Designer and Mentor and Conflict Managers Program advisor. Reed Union School District was one of the first in California to include these programs in their officially adopted curriculum and subsequently, other districts sought our expertise and experience in designing their own programs. In addition, I served on the District Health Committee and was the Outdoor Education Coordinator for a few years.
My educational background is significant in a number of areas as related to the development of 1ARC ePark Place and Kidcentric Curricula®. A MA in Multicultural Education, Mel Levine’s “Schools Attuned” Training in Learning Abilities/Differences, and Marshall Rosenberg’s “Non-Violent Communication in Education” will be integrated into Kidcentric Curricula®, as well as the interactive, cooperative, community based organizational aspects of the park itself. As we get closer to the time when we get into these aspects of planning and implementation, I see the uncountable ways I will be able to use my talents and expertise.
A bit about my educational philosophy…From the beginning of my teaching career until the present, I have worked from the basis of a child-centered, process-oriented philosophy. My respect for each child’s uniqueness has led me to work toward meeting the needs of the individual. The teaching techniques I prefer include “hands-on” activities to develop cognitive skills, as well as direct teaching to provide a framework for organizing knowledge. Though I work toward students’ competency in all areas, I tend to evaluate students more heavily on individual progress, rather than rating then against an arbitrary group standard. Since communication, positive attitude, and empathy are keys to most relationships, I propose that any educational endeavor needs to include the keeping of records reporting students’ strengths, needs, improvements, and accomplishments in both academic and personal development. There is always concern shown for the whole child and his/her potential and progress toward becoming the best he/she can be.
I understand that education is a social process. Activities that allow cooperative learning are important to the individual and social growth of the students. Programs and activities that promote cultural understanding (both the universal and distinguishing aspects) and conflict resolution are essential. I look forward to creating a community of 1ARC educators and leaders who are resourceful and willing to cooperatively create a stimulating environment in which to observe, gather data, pilot, and evaluate new curricula, programs, and instructional practices.