My LSS story begins as a volunteer in the evening English classes at the Center for New Americans when I was still a college student studying TESL (Teaching English as a Second Language) and Cultural Studies. I spent time helping students learn English and eventually did an ethnographic research project and my TESL practicum there. After graduating from Northwestern College (IA) I moved to Sioux Falls and continued to volunteer in the evening classes. I took a “hiatus” from volunteering when I moved to Lupeni, Romania to work with New Horizons Foundation as their Study Abroad Program Administrator for three years.
Soon after I returned to Sioux Falls in January 2013, I met Laura, the Education Program Coordinator, for coffee and was encouraged to apply for a Substitute Teacher position. I started subbing and also teaching Citizenship classes on Saturdays. Slowly more classes and responsibilities were added and I became a full-time employee in July 2013. I currently teach Oral 2 and Lit 1 English classes, Level 2 and Level 3 Citizenship classes, and Job Interview classes on Fridays. Along with blogging for the agency, I also help place volunteers in our English classes. (My story really has come full circle:)
I’d love to have you volunteer in my classes!! (Shameless plug #1) Click this link to get started!
Favorite Part of my Job:
Anytime I get to hear my students share their stories or see students engaging with each other across the table and across cultural and linguistic barriers, I think, “I love my life!”
These are some fun questions borrowed from James Lipton, host of Inside the Actor’s Studio.
1. What is your favorite word? lovely
2. What is your least favorite word? awkward
3. What sound or noise do you love? My nieces and nephews giggling
4. What sound or noise do you hate? The buzz coming from the lights above my work desk…right…now!
A song/band/type of music you’d risk wreck & injury to turn off when it comes on the radio? Twangy country or political radio talk shows
Favorite show on television? Ultimate Survival Alaska
Favorite movie? Under the Tuscan Sun
What are you grateful for today? A working furnace and my family. (They put up with me a great deal:)
Favorite meal? SOUP, hands down. Every country I’ve lived in has had really good soup, but I would say my favorite is my Grandma Lenora’s knoephla soup.
A talent you wish you had? to play a stringed instrument
What’s on your nightstand? A stack of books including King Leopold’s Ghost about the Congo…some Burts Bees lip balm, a couple of Taproot magazines, and an empty tea mug from Romania.
What’s something about you that would surprise us? hmmm….I LOVE “firsts”. A lot. I look for them and share them anytime I can. My most recent first was going snowshoeing at the Arboretum on Saturday.
Your six-word memoir: Sharing table, she learned to love.