Who is playing on your iPod?
I don’t have an iPod, but the music on my iPad reflects my eclectic love of music. To represent my Dad, I have Southern Gospel favorites, such as The Martins and Gold City. My tastes have evolved to include Third Day, Matt Redman, Steven Curtis Chapman, Laura Story, Josh Wilson, and even Skillet (at times).
What books are you currently reading? The Circle Maker by Mark Batterson and Extras by Scott Westerfeld (part of the Uglies series); Other books I have read recently and loved: The Maze Runner trilogy by James Dashner and Moon Over Manifest by Clare Vanderpool (to keep pace with my 2 middle-school age children); Teacher reads I recommend include The Book Whisperer by Donalyn Miller and Readicide by Kelly Gallagher (There’s no way a reading teacher can limit book recommendations to one or two!)
What is the best getaway location local or abroad? I love to go to Branson shows for family-friendly comedy and great music. My family and I also enjoy traveling to Florida, which we have done several times the last few years to visit Disney World, see the space shuttle launch, and take a cruise.
Bolivar, MO 65613
Current research: I am currently a doctoral student at the University of Missouri-Columbia studying literacy, leadership, and technology. I am particularly interested in how technology has redefined literate behavior. My research focuses on how technology has transformed literacy instruction and how classroom teachers’ attitudes toward technology integration affects their instructional choices.
Why do you enjoy teaching at SBU?As an undergraduate student at SBU, I enjoyed the camaraderie of other students who shared my faith and found the professors personable, helpful, and very supportive. I knew even then that one day I wanted to teach here at SBU and influence future teachers in that same way. I love that I can pray openly with my students and share how God has worked in my personal and professional life to bring me to where I am today.
Educational and Professional background: I received my undergraduate degree in elementary education from SBU. I went on to earn my master’s degree in reading from Dominican University in Illinois. I taught first grade and then taught in the early childhood department at OTC in Springfield, supervising students in the on-site preschool. I am presently pursuing my Ed.D. in Literacy, Leadership, and Technology in the Department of Learning, Teaching, and Curriculum at the University of Missouri-Columbia.
Faith Dedication I was saved in a Freewill Baptist Church at the age of seven with the modeling and instruction of Christian parents and church family. One of the verses that I hold onto is Isaiah 41:10: “So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.” This gives me faith in His presence and comfort. My family now attends the Stockton Christian Church in Stockton, Missouri. We are actively involved in Sunday School, worship, and youth activities, including VBS and children’s church, where I am the worship leader.