Hi, I'm Kat!
Tell us a little bit about yourself. I am Montessori and Early Childhood teacher in Brooklyn. I began my teaching career in the dance studio, where I taught dance to hundreds of children over the years. I realized that I wanted to work with children in a more in-depth way, so I studied Montessori basics at Washington Montessori Institute in Baltimore. I moved to NYC in 2013, and went to West Side Montessori School Teacher Education Program for my Early Childhood credential. I received my MEd in Early Childhood Special Education from Concordia College.
What's your philosophy on what it means to be a great teacher? children contain a blueprint for their adult selves at an extremely young age, they just haven’t had enough practice to fulfill their potential. The only way for a young person to develop into a fully productive adult is to be fostered through the education process in a way that allows this blueprint to come to fruition by means of exploration and nurturing, instead of being molded by suppression. I believe that an adult’s role in a child’s life is not to hinder this growth by implementing limitations, but prepare an atmosphere in which the curious mind of children is allowed to flourish.
What advice would you give to someone who is considering becoming a teacher? It takes at least 5 years to really become a teacher. The study never ends! Try to take it slow, be peaceful, be humble, and be compassionate.
In your opinion, what is the role of the live teacher in a world where it is becoming increasingly easy to get access to information through the internet and online courses? Real experiences can never be replaced by technology. Children learn through concrete interactions. Think back to your first memory of learning. When I was very young, my mother taught me to make biscuits. I could tell when the dough was ready by the way it felt. She taught me how to feel when the dough was not too dry or too sticky. How can you learn a thing like that online?
How can we, as teachers of children, work to build a society where people are respectful towards each other and the environment? Children love to know that their experiences are relatable. If a teacher can supply a child with language for how he/she feels, that child can use that language to identify that feeling in others. We must also provide children with the responsibility of taking care of their own environments. If we teach them all we can about how the environment works and how we can help and hurt it, they will care for it!
What is your philosophy on and approach to behavioral management? I lay out my expectations right off the bat. I allow children room to explore within expectations, and calmly remind them when they are pushing the limits too far. I believe in natural consequences, not imposed punishments and rewards.
Do you have experience working with children with special needs? If so, please specify. Yes. I have worked with many children with special needs classroom settings. I am also NY state certified to teach Early Childhood Special Education
Credentials: American Montessori Society Primary Certification, Association Montessori Internationale Teaching Assistant Certification, Master of Education: Early Childhood Special Education, Childhood Special Education, Certificate of Fitness (FDNY), First Aid, CPR, AED, Food Protection Certification, NYC Health Academy Medical Administration Training Certification, Mandated Reporter Training Certification