Faculty Focus: Tamara Warner
It is in our nature to look forward... to the next weekend, the next year, the next milestone. Here, we are helping our students reach even further, with Graduation from Meadowridge, then University: the ultimate goals. In the constant looking forward, we sometimes forget to look back to the beginning, where the foundations were laid.
Ms. Tamara Warner is one of the foundation builders, and for a few years now she has seen her first batches of students graduate. Hired in August 2000, Ms. Warner taught Grade 1 for seven years before moving to Kindergarten, from which she never wants to leave.
WHAT HAS KEPT YOU AT MEADOWRIDGE FOR 15 YEARS?
What keeps me here at the school are the personal and emotional connections. I am an emotional person, and the genuine feeling of belonging is so strong here.
YOU HAVE SEEN THE SCHOOL AND BUILDING CHANGE IN SO MANY WAYS IN YOUR TIME HERE. HOW DOES IT MAKE YOU FEEL?
To see us grow because people believe in us, share their talents, knowledge, time, money... What a powerful thing. It is a belief system of progress here; "think, act, reflect", as we say in Kindergarten.
It is something about learning how to be together that makes Kindergarten special. I love watching and helping the students really learn about their place in not only the classroom, but in the world.
WHAT HAVE YOUR STUDENTS TAUGHT YOU?
By observing children learn over many years a few things hold true which I transfer over to my adult life.
- §Things can be hard and hard things are necessary, but it feels so good to work through a solution. Sometimes even leaving a project and returning to it with a new approach feels even better.
- §Emotions are a huge part of our human story and they are expressed in so many different ways. It's ok to wear your heart on your sleeve and show vulnerability.
- §Stopping to check in with someone and giving hugs can go a long way. It makes a difference.
- §Every day is a new day, so stop worrying!
- §Everything is better with playdoh and colouring.
WHAT IS IT LIKE SEEING YOUR FIRST MEADOWRIDGE CLASSES GRADUATE?
It is amazing to see what they remember, and what affected them while they were so young. Alexander Howkins '15 is keeping me to a promise I made in Grade 1 to him. We made time capsules, and he buried his in his yard. I told him we would dig it up when he graduates, and he is holding me to that.
Another student came up to me at graduation, and he still has his Grade 1 planner! Looking back at all the notes his mother and I wrote back and forth, he thanked me for all we did to support him that year. The teamwork and communication between parents and teachers really make Meadowridge special, and even the students notice! Not all schools have this atmosphere.