This week we are lucky to showcase the multi-talented Louise Kleingeld who has worked as a primary school teacher and is now stretching her wings in the English secondary school classroom at Samuel Marsden Collegiate School.
I just love to be connected with like (and unlike) minds and have always been a bit of a networker even when I worked in the corporate world before coming to teaching. I get a kick out of meeting new people and sharing ideas, resources and experiences with them. I love the idea of Wellington teachers being able to reach out and help/inspire each other as I know this will ultimately benefit our students. Plus I am a big fan of Wellington in general so anything I can do to fly the flag for my city and put it in a positive light – I am there!
2. What’s something exciting that’s happening in your classroom or in your sector?
Well for me personally there is a lot of exciting things happening! After 6 years’ teaching at a primary level (Years 3, 4, & 5), 5 of them at Marsden, I have been given an opportunity to move into a position in our secondary school, teaching English. This is going to be a massive change for me but I feel ready for the challenge as I purposely did the conjoint teaching degree so that I had the option of teaching across different levels of the school. In addition to this exciting move I will be taking on the role of Future Learning Leader for our school – once I have found my feet a little. I am excited to have the opportunity to unpack the idea of “future learning” with my colleagues and help bring positive change into our school.
3. Who or what inspires you?
Oh my goodness, this is a hard question for me. I seem to be fairly easily inspired!! Not sure if that is a good thing or not! I can be watching an advert on television and feel inspired to do something by a mere word that is said, or a bar of a song that is played. Over the last few years I have been particularly inspired by some of my primary school colleagues who epitomise the ideals of future learning, student-centred, etc. I am inspired by teachers (no matter how long they have been teaching) who are on a lifelong journey of learning and are willing to challenge themselves to try new things or are open to new ideas. I am inspired by the new graduates who come with a wealth of fresh, innovative ideas and will question us about why we do things. I am inspired by my students, their curiosity and willingness to let me learn alongside them. The other teachers on Twitter who so openly share their experiences and allow me to learn from them are another big inspiration. And the embarrassing one? Severus Snape. Snape inspires me because he reminds me that true love or passion never diminishes but grows and deepens as times passes.
4. What’s your next professional learning goal?
Learn how to teach English in a secondary setting?!? Quite a big goal right now, and one that seems very daunting. Thank goodness for the likes of Philippa who has been amazingly supportive. Also finding ways of supporting all of my colleagues (those keen for change and others) in our future learning journey by making it seem doable, achievable and even…fun!?
5. When I’m not teaching, I’m…
Geeking out! I am such a chic geek. Love technology, finding new iPad apps, exploring with coding things, my husband works in IT so this is very convenient for helping this. I also geek out over historical movies, documentaries. I love cooking and trying new recipes / techniques in the kitchen – mostly successfully! I have 2 beautiful kittens (Alfred and Bruce) who I can spend hours playing with. I guess I could have summarised this paragraph as: geeky crazy cat lady! Oh dear!