The well-traveled Kayla Fraley came all the way from Nova Scotia to teach at Whitnall Middle School.
Well, not directly -- there have been a few stops along the way -- but she's happy to be here now and will teach seventh grade math and social studies during the 2012-13 school year.
She provided these answers for Patch's Meet the Teacher Q&A:
Patch: What school will you teach at, and what is your subject area? And what extracurriculars are you involved with?
KF: I will be teaching Grade 7 Math and Social Studies at . I also plan to continue coordinating the all-school Walk-A-Thon and the Grade 8 Washington DC Trip, in addition to cheering on my students at their various sporting events.
Patch: What is your hometown and where do you live now?
KF: I was born in Halifax, Nova Scotia, and moved all over when I was young. I relocated to the Milwaukee area with my husband in 2001, and am proud to call Wisconsin my home.
Patch: What college did you attend, and what is your prior work experience?
KF: I studied special education in Illinois, and recently graduated from Alverno College with my Bachelor of Science in Elementary and Middle Education. While this is my first year teaching grade seven math and social studies, I am no stranger to WMS. I am fortunate to have been a part of the Whitnall School District since 2001. During the past ten years at WMS, I have had the privilege to facilitate the Academic Support Center, co-founded the annual all-school Walk-A-Thon, coordinated the 8th Grade DC Trip, and filled in as a long-term substitute in both seventh- and eighth-grade classrooms. In addition, I have recently joined the staff at Alverno College in their Research Center for Women and Girls. Among several exciting initiatives, we are currently working on developing a mentoring curriculum that will address the unique issues facing Milwaukee's teenage girls. I feel incredibly honored to be a part of the amazing work that has potential to make a positive impact in the lives of so many young women!
Patch: Do you have any connections to Whitnall? Is there a particular reason you wanted to teach in the Whitnall district?
KF: I feel truly honored to be teaching for the Whitnall School District. In addition to their strong academic reputation and commitment to excellence, what drew me back to Whitnall is the unyielding sense of commitment and community among students, families, and staff. Whitnall serves the most incredible students, and is a community that is committed to remaining relevant and invested in making a difference. Apart from my connection to the Whitnall Community, I feel truly fortunate to teach at the middle level. Middle School students are truly some of my most favorite people to spend time with. They challenge and inspirit me—they are the reason I look forward to coming to work every morning, and they ensure that my job will never be boring. The opportunity to teach at WMS feels like returning home, for which I am truly grateful!
Patch: Do you have any hobbies you'd like to share?
KF: I enjoy crafting, and love any chance to be creative! Some of the activities I enjoy most include scrapbooking, making jewelry, reading, running, and spending time with my family.
Patch: Tell us about your favorite summer vacation, either as a child or a grown-up.
KF: A favorite vacation experience for me is definitely my 2008 trip to Boston, Massachusetts with my husband. I grew up on the east coast, surrounded by the rich history of the beginning of our nation. I am a huge history buff, and revel in the opportunity to stand in the very places where history has been made. My husband was born and raised in the Midwest, and didn't have the same exposure to the sites and cities that helped to define our country. While he was most drawn to seeing a game at Fenway and the chance to explore the Sports Museum of New England, having the opportunity to visit Beacon Hill, sitting on the shore watching the ships enter Boston Harbor, and walking the Freedom Trail, experiencing history at every turn became the experiences we both enjoyed most. While I may not have turned my husband into a history buff in just one short week, Boston quickly became one of his favorite cities too!