CRT Spotlights are intended to encourage and inspire fellow teachers of the faith. Know a religion teacher who deserves to be featured? Please send me their name and e-mail address via my Contact page. Thanks!
What teaching positions have you had and for how long?
Homeschool (1 year), 7th-9th Grade Religion Teacher (16 years)
Where have you taught?
St. Thomas Aquinas Catholic High School – Russell, Ontario, Canada
JUST FOR FUN
FAVORITE: Bible verse or story
Philippians 4:8 – “Finally, brethren, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is gracious, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things.”
St. Thomas Aquinas, St. John Paul II
FAVORITE: Christian Work of Art
Song: Christ is Risen by Matt Maher
Sculpture: The Pieta (I saw it once!)
TV: I really liked the first season of “The Chosen”
FAVORITE: Book (besides the Bible) 😁
I just finished reading “Unbroken” by Laura Hildenbrand
FAVORITE: Vacation spot
My sugar shack in March
FAVORITE: Thing(s) to do in your free time
I enjoy long distance running, reading, making maple syrup, and playing with my kids.
FROM THE CLASSROOM
What do you enjoy most about being a Catholic religion teacher?
I can talk about God, Jesus, prayer and all that good stuff in the classroom. I can live my faith AND get paid!
What religion topic/lesson do enjoy teaching the most?
Existence of God, proofs for the resurrection, and I love not knowing the answers to their weird questions – and then finding the answers! Also, have had many awesome prayer sessions!
What is something your students have taught you?
I don’t know everything. I have also learned that sometimes the lived experience of a student is very far from what is being presented in Religion class and my own lived experience. This teaches/forces me to innovate my work to make it accessible to students who’s experience of the faith is limited and completely misguided.
What is a “win” (story of success) that you have experienced through your role as a religion teacher?
1) I have survived middle school for 16 years.
2) When I do my end of year feedback questionnaires and students say that my class was better than Math
3) When students are able to identify one thing from the course that they were able to really identify with and grow from. (I work in a publicly funded Catholic school so unfortunately many students/families do not practice the faith. This is good and bad. Good in that the simplest things often have huge impacts on students.)
What is a struggle or challenge you have experienced as a religion teacher?
Social media and all the crazy information that is presented on the Internet. At this point in time Google knows it all, so when an idea that is contrary to popular culture is presented in class I sometimes get harsh reactions from students… and parents!
What have you found to be most effective in helping your students develop a strong relationship with Christ and His Church?
Prayer and showing that belief in God and the Incarnation are very reasonable positions to hold.
What kind of advice or encouragement would you most want to share with a brand-new religion teacher?
Persevere, don’t give up, and don’t de afraid to fail. My old grade 8 teacher told me once that every once in awhile, when the bell goes at the end of the day, you just have to leave and start fresh the next day. That is usually Mondays for me!
Anything else you’d like to add?
In these crazy times, the world needs great teachers more than ever! Keep up all your hard work everyone!
How can other teachers connect with you?
Categories: The CRT Spotlight