Meet the Fifth Grade Team
I was born in Winston Salem, NC. While attending Appalachian University I received two degrees. My first degree was in Child Psychology and second was in Elementary Education. I began teaching in 1995. I taught middle school math and science for ten years in Morganton, NC before moving to Raleigh. In 2004 I began teaching math and science at Washington. I adore Washington because of the diversity and acceptance of others in our population. I wanted to be a teacher to make school fun and engaging. My classroom is often hands on and loud. The best thing about teaching is watching the students grow and learn. When I am not at school I love to be outside. I enjoy the mountains, the beach, live music and sitting by a pool or lake. I also like animals. I have two dogs and two cats. My husband and I have two children. Both my son and daughter attended Washington ES and they loved it.
As an educator,I have a heart to see students succeed in life, and a strong desire to help them prepare for purpose as a caring “guide on the side." I believe we grow together as llfe-long learners. My mission is to provide emotional, organizational, and instructional support for students as they learn how to collaborate with others. I desire to see my students explore and develop their passions in pursuing careers based on their unique talents and creative skills.
My love for teaching has allowed me to prepare creative thinkers from levels 3rd grade through college. To me education is the pursuit of happiness and fulfillment in serving one’s gifts to the world. I realize that as educators we are in the unique position to help students identify their gifts, continue to learn, develop, and thrive as citizens of the world. I am also committed to providing the support and advocacy needed for all students to achieve their goals of completion.
Other interesting facts about me are that I am the oldest and only girl with two younger brothers. I grew up in a small town called Nashville, NC and graduated from North Carolina State University. Most recently I completed a NC teacher licensure program at William Peace University. I love spoken word, poetry, singing and the Performing Arts. Science fiction is my favorite genre to read and Syfy movies are always a treat for me to watch. I am very close to my cousins who feel more like brothers and sisters and New York is my favorite city to visit in the United States!
I am honored to be a part of the Washington Elementary family. I teach math and science on the Macon/Edwards team. I am a product of Wake County schools kindergarten through 12th grade. I graduated from Agnes Scott Women's College in Decatur, Georgia in 1997 with a BA in Sociology and Anthropology in addition to my K-6 teaching certification. After graduation,I returned home to Raleigh to begin my teaching career at York Elementary. I received my Master of Education from Meredith College in 2000. I earned my National Board Teaching Certification in 2003. During my over twenty years of teaching I have taught 4th, 5th and 6th grade. I was also a reading teacher for grades K-2. Teaching 5th grade is my passion. I love this age group’s sense of humor, inquisitive nature, as well as their desire for independence! My goal is to make the classroom environment an active place where students feel comfortable taking risks. My style of teaching math and science lends itself to hands on exploration and problem solving. My husband and I have two sons. We love traveling and enjoy spending time at our lake house, boating, fishing and birding.
Hello. My code name is Ken Smith. I am the Grade 5 ELA/Social Studies teacher. This is my 2nd year at Washington. This is my 22nd year of teaching overall. I graduated from Ohio University. My experiences in teaching includes stints at schools in Sampson County and in Wake County.
I am married to my lovely wife, Christine, also a teacher. I consider her the reading queen and you will often find her with a good book. My stepson, Henry, is a superb and avid rock climber who is a coach, route-setter, and individual instructor at all the Triangle Rock Clubs. He is also a student, studying natural resources, at North Carolina State University. My stepdaughter, Mary, is an award-winning and talented artist and is the family stand-up comedian. She is a student at Broughton High School. Our dog, Jasper, is a champion napper, loves the sun, and is a bed hog.
I am an Ohio native, growing up in suburban Cleveland. I am a life-long fan of the Indians and the Browns. What is that saying…Misery loves company? Cleveland sports fans have endured seasons of misery and heartbreaks. If you enjoy baseball, you may see me occasionally on the field at the Durham Bulls Athletic Park. I work several games over the summer as a member of the Ground Crew.
I enjoy reading; listening to music, especially my vinyl records; watching movies; hiking; traveling, and watching sunsets and clouds rolling by.
I look forward to a great year and helping every one of my students achieve “whole” success.