How long have you been working at Connect Charter School?
7 years at Connect
What is your favourite unit to teach?
I love to teach LITERATURE! The art of understanding and appreciating the power of language as it moves all humanity and a single student.
What is your educational/professional background?
I have degrees in both English and History, with a Bachelor of Education from the University of Calgary. But what makes me a strong teacher, is experience; every day as a teacher makes me better at my job.
What brought you to Connect?
I applied to work at Connect Charter 7 years ago…and I didn’t get the job! Ms. Waite was a strong applicant, and my interview and resume were kept on file. Two months later, I received a phone call, asking if I could begin work…in 48 hours! At the time, I happened to be camping outside of Seattle, but, anyone who knows this school, knows that it is worth canceling a trip, or driving long distances. I have never regretted this decision.
What do you consider the best part of working at our school?
To name a single part of this school that is ‘best’ seems impossible. I love the support I have from parents (and their engagement with each child’s education); I love the trust from my board and administrators to do what I know best for student learning; I love the students, who despite my efforts, manage to learn and enjoy themselves with more enthusiasm than I could possibly hope for.
Tell us a bit about your family.
I am from a sprawling Saskatchewan family, and now I have my own! My husband, Russell Avramenko, and I were married in 2014, after which we adopted our son Killian in January, 2017. We now work well to make sure our son has the same feelings of family that we remember so fondly (which means plenty of Christmas gifts, and celebrating music and food with abandon!).
What do you like to do when you’re not at school?
I’m a runner and a reader. I read a novel a week, and I run marathons…while listening to books on tape, haha. My husband and I also love boardgames, with friends, family, each other, and soon, our son.
What is your most recent rewarding moment as a staff member at Connect?
Recently, two young ladies in my class told me I was a fantastic teacher, they loved my class, and had fun everyday (perhaps they exaggerated that last part). These comments are common enough to give me a big head, but every single time, it reminds me that I am appreciated, and the work I do is indeed noticed. I love the Humanities, and I love it when I see that passion rubbing off on others.
Tell us something about yourself that most people don’t know about you?
I was arrested in China. Spent 6 hours in a 10-by-10 foot cell, waiting for them to decide if I had stolen the watch or not. They refused to let me call my local friends, and I do not speak Mandarin. Upon realizing I was the wrong person, they released me. When I arrived at my hotel, there were two police cars and the Canadian consulate officer…and they were angrier at me for getting in trouble than anyone else….
Do you have a fun story from one of your field trips?
Field trip downtown with grade 9s. Ran into a dance group, waiting to start their practice outside their bus, near the Centre for Performing Arts. We spent 5min in a dance battle, followed by 10min learning new moves, which we whipped out at least once a week for the rest of the year.
What is your favourite colour of socks to wear?
More outrageous, more epic. My favorite socks are usually red or purple…with stripes and/or dots!
If you were given a chance, would you enter Big Brother?
Yes. Yes again. Yes some more!
What was the best thing before sliced bread?
Ice. Iced water is only surpassed by chilled wine on July 1st.
Would you rather fight one horse-sized duck, or 100 duck-sized horses?
I’m more of a runner….so horse-sized duck….I can outrun that, haha.
What movie genre would you want to have a starring role in?
Indie film, with crazy shirts, casual jackets, and random, sarcastic lines.
What animal do you wish you could make love you unconditionally?
Dragon. Puff the Magic Dragon was my favorite song as a child.
If someone wrote a biography about you, what do you think the title should be?
Mistakes Were Made.
If you were a box of cereal, what would you be and why?
Cinnamon Toast Crunch. Lots of sugar and energy and BANG, but spicy!