About Me

About Me... Personally

My personal life keeps me super busy and I love every minute of it! Our family is bigger than the Brady Bunch. Together, John and I have 8 kids- 6 boys and 2 girls (age 24-12). We also have a dog, 2 cats, and a guinea pig! Choir programs, baseball, and soccer games, keep us on the go, but sitting down together for dinner is our favorite time of the day.

About Me... My Education

I graduated from Midwestern State University in 1996 with a Bachelor's degree in Interdisciplinary Studies. At the time, I swore I would NEVER go back to school, but I got older, the kids grew up, and I eventually changed my mind. In 2008 I graduated from Dallas Baptist University with a Masters degree in Curriculum & Instruction and after a two week break went straight to work on my Doctorate. It was a long and painful 5 years, but in May of 2014 I finally finished. The following August I walked the stage and received my Doctorate degree in Early Childhood Studies from the University of North Texas. While I am truly a life-long learner, this time I mean it when I say... I am NEVER going back to school. Professional reading, classroom visits, and staff development will have to be enough from here on out!

About Me... My Career in Education

In December of 1995 I graduated from Midwestern State University. At that same time City View Elementary in Wichita Fallas decided to take 4 half-day kindergarten classes and turn them into 3 full-day classes. It was perfect timing! I graduated from college and walked right into a kindergarten classroom. I taught kindergarten in Wichita Falls for 3 years and in Grand Prairie for 13 years. I have also worked as a K-1 District Strategist and Pre-K Specialist. In August of 2014 I left Grand Prairie and went to work for Dallas ISD. I spent my first year in Dallas working as a Pre-K Specialist and in August of 2015 I officially joined the K-2 Curriculum & Instruction Department as their Professional Development Manager. I currently supervise 10 literacy coaches and oversee and create most of the K-2 professional development for the district. 

One of the greatest things about my current job is all of the time I get to spend with Literacy Gurus such as Jeff Anderson, Tim Rasinski, Stephanie Harvey, Donalyn Miller (The Book Whisperer), Tanny McGregor, and many others. I love having the opportunity to learn from these Literacy Greats!
The Write Guy - Jeff Anderson

Tim Rasinski

Stephanie Harvey

The Book Whisperer - Donalyn Miller

I knew when I started college that I wanted to teach kindergarten and the 16 years I spent teaching it are the highlight of my educational career. 

My very first kindergarten class- City View Elementary (1996-1997)

City View Elementary 1997-1998

City View Elementary 1998-1999

Florence Hill Elementary 1999-2000

Florence Hill Elementary 2000-2001

Florence Hill Elementary 2001-2002

Florence Hill Elementary 2002-2003

Florence Hill Elementary 2003-2004

Florence Hill Elementary 2004-2005

Florence Hill Elementary 2005-2006

Florence Hill Elementary 2006-2007

Mike Moseley Elementary 2007-2008

Mike Moseley Elementary 2008-2009

Mike Moseley 2009-2010

Sallye Moore Elementary 2012-2013

Sallye Moore Elementary 2013-2014

About Me... Something Interesting

My dissertation study was anything but traditional. Rather than researching assessment, developmentally appropriate practice, or some area of literacy, I looked at how teachers gender young children in the early childhood classroom. I specifically worked to disrupt gender stereotypes with my own students and in my own classroom. Most of the research that exists shows how researchers have gone into early childhood classrooms and studied other people's students. There is very little on teachers working with their own students to change their own practices. The rareness of my work paid off because, this spring, Peter Lang is publishing my dissertation study as a book. I am so excited about its release! The best part of the book is the cover. The young girl on the front is a student that was in my class the year I did the study. The cover depicts her just as she came to class everyday- bending gender stereotypes and making her own way as a girl who could be and do anything she wanted.  

About Me... Things I Love

The Sweet Man in My Life

My Girls

The Boys

Books! Books! and More Books!
I love books- picture books, young adult chapter books, adult novels, professional books... I LOVE TO READ! and I love inspiring teachers to add more read-alouds into their day. My goal is to spread a love for reading like Donalyn Miller- the Book Whisperer. 

I love kindergartners! I loved teaching them and spending my day with them. Even when they were driving me crazy, I was crazy about them. They are the part of the classroom that I miss the most. 

All of My Years of Teaching and My Former Students
I always say that my years in the classroom are the highlight of my career. Nothing else I ever do will top having my own class of students. 

My Jobs
While I miss having my own class of students, I enjoy spending my days working to grow teachers and make them better for their students and my nights educating students on how to be teachers. 

Instructional Strategy Team - Dallas ISD

Adjunct Professor - University of North Texas

PreK Presenter for Staff Development for Educators (SDE)

Growing up I was definitely "dog" person. Then my youngest daughter, Abby, got a kitten that turned out to be just like a dog- playful, loyal, and loving- I fell in love with her immediately and have been a "cat" person ever since!



Mr. Putter and Tabby books are my favorite cat stories! They always made my students and I laugh out loud. Mr. Putter and Tabby Walk the Dog is the best! 

I love tea- unsweetened and flavored- hot or cold. I have a few favorite places that I will go out of my way to stop by- Teavanna, Jason's Deli, Bolsa, and oddly enough... Panda Express. I need a little... or a lot of tea every day. All I really need is a cup of tea and a good book...

1 comment:

  1. Love your blog. I'm a Burkburnett Texas resident who teaches kindergarten in Oklahoma. I admire your determination to get a doctorate. A late bloomer, I always thought eventually I would get my doctorate in Early Childhood education. However, having my first child at the age of 44 kind of derailed those plans. I wouldn't change a thing but I loved college and writing and sometimes I get the bug to do it. So glad I found your blog. Looking forward to future posts.
    Lisa Liddiard