Ms. Gardiner has been a teacher for five years.

Why did you decide to become a teacher?
I was helping out my sister’s teacher one year with packing up their room for the summer. I loved being around the students. I took some classes in early childhood education and loved working with students during my volunteer hours. I decided then to switch my degree to elementary education.

What is a goal of yours as a teacher?
To help students achieve and be the very best they can be. I love working with ESE students and they often can be very discouraged about their abilities in the classroom. I love finding something that they are great at showcasing it so that they believe in themselves. This helps create a culture of learning and the students will work harder in other areas as well.

Do you have any hidden talents?
I am awesome at drawing. I never let the students know right away and often draw stick figures in my journals and anchor charts. Then later on I show the students that I can draw and it catches their attentions. I use it to my advantage as a reward and have mini brain breaks with step-by-step instructions on drawing an image.

Is there a quote or saying that you live by?
Don’t live life with caution but go skidding into the grave, because you only have one life to live.

What changes would you like to see in schools today?
Allow play and fun to be allowed back in the classroom. I’ve seen so many children have anxiety issues over all the testing that they have. I’ve also seen children not know how to use scissors properly or really know how to color. It is said that we have taken this away.