About The Teacher
Hey y'all!! A little about me and my kin here, then on to my teaching credentials. We are of Irish, French, British, and Welsh descent, and have lived primarily in Pennsylvania since my family came here from Ireland, Germany, and Wales in the late 1800's. (I did some genealogical research on my family a few years ago, and discovered that we are NOT German at all, which we used to believe wholeheartedly!! We are French and Scottish instead - with a fair amount of Irish and Welsh, too!) I was able to trace my family back to the 1500's in Eastern France, and to the 1300's in Scotland -- to Urquart! BIG surprise! If you've never tried genealogy - you should; it's very interesting. But be sure you have time... it's very addicting and time consuming!)
Obviously we've all moved around quite a bit, and my family settled here in the Hudson Valley when I was about 8. I am a product of the WCSD!!
Right now we live in the Red Oaks Mill area. I have tried to make the area around our house look like an English country cottage with perennial gardens and roses in the front, but the deer love perennials, and our weather is not like England's, so it's not quite the same. But I do love my flowers!
We, my 28-year old daughter and I, live here with our rescue puppy - the Princess of Vassar Road - Miss Sonja Lu, our Dalmation, Angus, and our cats, Bo and Ninniane (We call her "Little Girl").
We love to travel and we love to read and we love to swim. Thank goodness for the pool in our back yard!! Our favorite place to travel is the West Country in England (where King Arthur was born). And we are both avid readers and writers. My favorite writer is C.S. Lewis, and my daughter loves sci-fi/fantasy, Jane Austen, and mythology. I am also passionate about anything ENGLISH – a RABID anglophile! You will no doubt notice this in class... (Aye, that you will :) ) (PS -- a few years ago, I bought a new car that reflects my love of the UK-- it's a RED Mini Cooper and I LOVE it.... AND... it has the Union Jack on the rear view mirror. SO exciting to me!)(PS - Have you noticed that I use exclamation points a great deal? I think it's a bit irritating... but I am a very excited person -- so if I offend -- my apologies :( )
Two of my favorite poems follow:
Nu we sculan herigan heofonrices Weard,
Meotoed meahte and his modgethanc,
weorc Wuldorfaeder swe he wundra gehwaes,
ece Dryhten, ord onstealde.
He aerest gesceop eorthan bearnum
heofon to hrofe, halig Scyppend;
Tha middengeard, moncynnes Weard,
ece Dryhten, aefter teode
firum foldan, Frea aelmihtig.
SOFTLY, in the dusk, a woman is singing to me;
Taking me back down the vista of years, till I see
A child sitting under the piano, in the boom of the tingling strings
And pressing the small, poised feet of a mother who smiles as she
In spite of myself, the insidious mastery of song
Betrays me back, till the heart of me weeps to belong
To the old Sunday evenings at home, with winter outside
And hymns in the cozy parlour, the tinkling piano our guide.
So now it is vain for the singer to burst into clamour
With the great black piano appassionato. The glamour
Of childish days is upon me, my manhood is cast
Down in the flood of remembrance, I weep like a child for the past.
D.H. Lawrence. 1885–1930
Presently, my favorite author is Bill Bryson -- who writes travel and personal memoirs. He is a HOOT! (Try reading THE LIFE AND TIMES OF THE THUNDERBOLT KID! You will LAUGH OUT LOUD!!)
While I DO love Mr. Bryson, probably my favorite author of ALL TIME is C. S. Lewis. He is probably the most articulate and CLEAR writing author I have ever encountered, and he has had a profound impact on the way I think about life, and the way I write.
And now for my credentials...
Education and Professional Experience
High School - Roy C. Ketcham, Wappingers Falls, New York 1975
B.A. English and Psychology - State University of New York at Albany 1980
M.A. Secondary English Education - S.U.N.Y. at Albany 1982Professional Experience
1998 - 2017 John Jay High School
9th grade Regents English, 9th Grade Honors English
10th grade Honors English11th grade Regents English
Advisor – National Honor Society, Proscenium, GSA Pride, Young Democrats Club, Yearbook, Interact Club
Spring Theatre trips to London
Summer Trips to Italy and Greece and to the UK
1996 -1998 Roy C. Ketcham Senior High School
9th grade Regents English
10th grade Regents English
1993-1996 Faith Christian Academy
7th and 8th grade English
Course I Mathematics, 7th and 8th grade math
American and World History
Earth Science, Life Science
Yearbook Advisor, NJHS Advisor, Student Council Advisor
Junior High Curriculum coordinator
1989-1991 Mount Aloysius College/Saint Francis College
Adjunct Professor: Introduction to Literature, Short Story
1985-1989 Bishop McCort High School
AP English, Academic English 12, Honors English 12
Honors English 11, Essay Writing
Public Speaking and Forensics, Advanced Forensics
Forensics Coach, Director of Drama Productions
Student Activities Coordinator, Coordinator for Summer travel in
England (Three trips to England!)
1983-1984 Grace Christian School
7th and 8th grade English/Language Arts
Pre-Calculus Analysis, Algebra I, II
Yearbook Advisor, Student Council Advisor, Cheerleading Coach
1982-1983 Pineview Christian Academy
English/Language Arts grades 7 - 12, Mass Media and Communications
Psychology, Sociology, Social Studies 11
Math 7, Bible 11,12
Student Council Advisor, English Curriculum Coordinator
1981-1982 Loudonville Christian School
English/Language Arts 7 and 8
Mission For The Class
My goal for this class is to instill in students a love of language and literature, and to provide them with the skills necessary to be effective communicators -- both in written and spoken language.
Obviously, I intend to prepare them for the upcoming AP and Regents Exams, so analytical and expository writing, based on selected readings, will be a major focus in class.
My hope is that in my class students will flourish in an environment that is structured, but fun, and one that I strive to make safe, non-threatening, and nurturing, so that they will continue to mature, and
become THINKING, KIND, and compassionate human beings.