Saturday, July 7, 2012

Featured Teacher: Heather Whetham

1.     How long have you been on Teachers Pay Teachers?  What made you decide to be a part of it?
I joined TpT in 2009. I cannot remember why I joined, but I do know I started taking it more seriously in 2011 when I realized that my lessons could impact students around the world!

2.     When did you know that you wanted to be in education?
Growing up it never even crossed my mind that teaching might be my calling. However, I was a Girl Scout leader for a younger troop, Sunday school teacher, and I even earned my Girl Scout Gold Award my holding a day camp for 3-4 year olds. It wasn't until college when I was taking a bunch of business and computer programming classes that I realized I missed children and I finally switched majors!

3.     How are you currently involved in education?
I currently teach 5th grade special education in an inclusion classroom. I also teach Asian students online through video conferencing. Finally, I blog and connect with others online.

4.     What would be your advice to people who are considering joining Teachers Pay Teachers?
Visit the forums! Blog! Collaborate with others! Be patient! Like I said before, I began TpT back in 2009 but did not really begin to be successful until 2012. That is around the same time that I started doing all of the things mentioned above. There are some people who take off and do really well right away, but don't get discouraged if it takes you awhile.

5.     What has been a highlight, thus far, about being on Teachers Pay Teachers?
For me, the biggest highlight is seeing thousands of downloads of some of my freebies. It is just so humbling to see that there are thousands of students throughout the country and world that are benefitting from my ideas!

6.     What is something fun about you that other teachers don’t know?
I used to teach in a multi-grade classroom to 100% ELL students. They were Hutterites. For those who don't know, that's similar to Amish in that they're very religious, but they do have vehicles.

7.     Do you participate in education outside of the classroom?  In what type of role?
I also teach online to Asian students. There are several professional organizations I have belonged to over the years.

8.     What profession other than yours would you like to attempt?
If I ever leave teaching, my goal is to become a college professor. What better way to impact more students that to be directly responsible for the teacher they get!?

9.     What profession would you not like to do?
I'm not really fond of desk jobs. I've done a lot of things over the years: retail, online jobs, factory, manual labor, and working with animals. But desk jobs were my least favorite!

10. Who is your favorite author?  Favorite educational author?  And why?
My favorite author is Mo Willems. I so enjoy reading his books to young children. They get to interact with the book and they absolutely love them! I have too many educational authors to choose from! My summer reading list is a mile long! Lol

Heather Whetham, aka HoJo Heather's TPT store

Heather's Prized Products

While teaching Kindergarten, I decided to put my Reading Recovery skills to use. I created an alphabet recognition book using stickers! You can read all about it here.

One of the first items I ever created was Multiple Meaning Word Cards. They can be used for centers, as individual practice, or even to play the game Scoot.  Multiple Meaning Word Cards 

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