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Degrees and Certifications:

North Carolina State University- Bachelors of Science in Nutrition Science

Ms. Kaitlyn Schaffer

Kindergarten Teacher

Ms. Schaffer grew up in Raleigh, and attended WCPSS schools growing up. She attended NC State to major in nutrition science, with a focus in childhood nutrition education. Ms. Schaffer interned at the Boys and Girls club of Wake County and reignited her passion for working with children. After graduating with her bachelors, she decided to return to NC State for her masters in Elementary Education, and will be graduating in the Spring of 2023. She was an IA at Powell last year, and is excited to be returning this year as a Kindergarten teacher. When she is not at school, Ms. Schaffer enjoys spending time with her family and friends, cooking, and supporting NC State athletics (Go Pack!). 

My Play-losophy:

Integrating play into the school day is so important because it gives students the opportunity to apply what they are learning in the classroom in a hands-on manner. Additionally, students have the ability to think outside the box and use their imagination. 

Phone:

Email:

Degrees and Certifications:

Savannah College of Art and Design - BFA in Illustration and minor in Art History

Mrs. Sheila Shamel

Kindergarten Teacher

Ms. Shamel was born and raised in Nassau, Bahamas. She came to the U.S. to attend Saint Mary's College here in Raleigh and then transferred to Savannah College of Art and Design where she earned a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Illustration and a minor in Art History. After college, she moved to Orlando, FL with her future husband to work for Walt Disney World. Following that magical adventure, Ms. Shamel was a graphic designer, in-house illustrator, and photo researcher with Harcourt School Publishers. Her proudest moment while working for Harcourt was doing the photo research for the fourth grade NC Social Studies textbook that her children eventually used after the Shamel family moved back to Raleigh. While this is only Ms. Shamel's second year at Powell, and first as a Kindergarten teacher, her roots run very deep here. Her mother-in-law taught at Powell for 30 plus years and both of her children attended Powell. With her teaching experience being primarily in Pre-K where play and learning are so intertwined, Powell was a natural progression for her. With a great love for teaching little people and all things creative Ms. Shamel is thrilled to be inspiring a new generation of children with a passion for learning.

My Play-losophy:

"In every job that must be done, There is an element of fun! You find the fun and snap! The job's a game." - Mary Poppins

Play is organic. It's intuitive. It's not something that has to be taught. The problem is, as we get older we forget how to play. This is the reason why I love working with children. Their natural ability to always gravitate to the playful side of life is a trait we should all be so lucky to have. Playing along with learning creates the foundation for the philosophy of "do what you love and you'll never work a day in your life."  My goal as a teacher is to foster a love for learning in each child, and what better approach than with play and ingenuity. 

Phone:

Email:

Degrees and Certifications:

University of South Carolina - Bachelor of Psychology East Carolina University - Masters Degree in Social Work

Mrs. Leigh Tatum

EBS-K Teacher
 
Mrs. Tatum grew up in a small town in GA. This is her third year at Powell Elementary as an instructional assistant and she continues to work in the EBS-Kindergarten classroom. She has an undergraduate degree in psychology from the University of South Carolina and a masters degree in social work from East Carolina University. She has worked with young children in a variety of settings for many years. Mrs. Tatum is married and they have 2 children. She is very thankful to have the opportunity to work with an amazing staff who are all so creative and motivated to make sure every child is successful and who care about ALL children.   
 
My Play-losophy: 
Children need to play and us as adults need to watch them play. We can learn so much about the child from watching them play. To quote the famous psychologist Erik Erikson, "You see a child play, and it is so close to seeing an artist paint, for in play a child says things without uttering a word. You can see how he solves his problems. You can also see what's wrong. Young children, especially, have enormous creativity, and whatever's in them rises to the surface in play."

Phone: @_harristeacher

Email:

Degrees and Certifications:

SUNY Buffalo State College - Bachelor of Science in Art Education K-12 SUNY Alfred State College - Associate of Arts in English and Humanities Certified Zentangle Teacher

Mrs. Sarah Harris

Instructional Assistant

Mrs. Harris has taught in North Carolina since 2004 after moving from Buffalo, NY to pursue warmer temperatures and start her career in art education. She began in Johnston County teaching a K-5 art program for seven years. After the birth of her daughters she became a stay at home parent but continued to teach summer programs at Artspace and Art Together in Downtown Raleigh. She followed her daughters to preschool and became a part-time preschool teacher at Arts Together. When they were accepted into Powell, she witnessed the play-based focus on the school community and wanted to be a part of it. She took on the role as Instructional Assistant and has been here ever since.

Mrs. Harris enjoys traveling, reading, and watching movies with her family. Their pup Obi (Obi-Wan D.O.G.) joins the party on the couch. She's usually found drinking coffee and trying out a new art process. She has a passion for exploring materials and teaching others how to play again through art. Mrs. Harris became a certified Zentangle teacher in April 2022. 

My play-losophy:

I believe that learning through play reaches all of the areas in the brain. It's visual, kinetic, auditory, sensory...with the whole body at play learning is reinforced and the knowledge is easier to recall because it's attached to how they experienced it. 

Phone:

Email:

Degrees and Certifications:

St. Mary’s College - Raleigh, NC, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill- BFA Fine Arts Parson’s School of Design - NY Art Certification K-12

Ms. Mary Louise Talley

Instructional Assistant

Ms. Talley is a native of Raleigh and attended WCPSS Schools. She has a 10-year-old daughter. Ms. Talley was previously an art teacher at Root Elementary prior to having her daughter.  She has been working in Raleigh preschools and has been a substitute teacher in WCPSS as well. Ms. Talley enjoys spending her time with young children and teaches art at her home on the porch during the summer months to preschool children. Ms. Talley enjoys hiking, cooking and traveling to the NC beaches and mountains.

My play-losophy:

Play sets us up to learn, stay active and live a healthy life. Play is a fun way to learn at school. Play is a great way to connect together as a team with students and staff. We can explore all areas of learning together as a school and community. 

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Email:

Degrees and Certifications:

East Carolina University - Bachelor of Science Recreation and Leisure Studies

Mr. Bradley Skinner

Instructional Assistant

Mr. Skinner is a native of Raleigh. He has worked on many activities in different resorts in Myrtle Beach, Orlando, and Wrightsville beach. Mr. Skinner joined Powell in 2021. Prior to working at Powell, he worked at the YMCA for eighteen years for Track Out and different summer camps. During that time he taught sports, fishing, art, and target sports. 

My Play-losophy:

Play can teach life skills, reduce stress, boost confidence, and it is just fun!