Primary

Our Academic Staff members are at the very heart of our School. It is their enthusiasm and commitment in providing learning to our students that inspires our high standards and continued success.

HeadStart’s over 90 specialist teachers have British, Australian, US or similar internationally recognised qualifications which include Bachelor and Master Degrees and Doctorates. They bring with them a wealth of current experience from their home countries and from other international schools. Teachers in Foundation and Primary School are supported by a team of qualified teaching assistants.

The dedication and commitment of our Operational Staff in supporting the day-to-day running of HeadStart ensures that our students receive the very best in learning and extra-curricular activities.

‘Throughout the school, teachers’ subject knowledge and understanding of how students learn are strong. Relationships between students and teachers are positive. The ratio of qualified teachers to students, especially in the early years and lower primary classes, is high. ‘Deputy’ teachers, who are fully qualified teachers in their home countries, support class teachers. Due to their expertise, they make a significant difference to the rates of progress that students make. Teachers know students well and assess them accurately. This enables teachers to plan work that matches the ability of individual students and caters well for their varying needs.’ Education Development Trust (EDT) Accreditation Report, June 2017

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Sam Young

Year 1 Blue
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My name is Sam Young and I started teaching at HeadStart in 2020. I am the Homeroom Teacher for Year 1 Blue. Over the past year, I have loved living and working in Thailand; eating amazing food, meeting wonderful people and visiting the most beautiful places. I love to explore and am a big lover of animals. I enjoy diving in beautiful dive sites where there are thousands of sea creatures as well as exploring jungles, looking for the most wonderful wildlife. I was born in a town called Burton-On-Trent in the UK but moved to Cheltenham where I gained my Undergraduate Degree in Primary Education. Since completing my degree, I have spent 5 years teaching in Bristol. For the first 4 years, I taught in Reception and have spent the most recent academic year teaching Year 1. I truly feel blessed to be a teacher as it is such a rewarding profession. It is so satisfying seeing children get excited about learning and watching them grow into confident, independent learners. “Teamwork makes the dream work” is a phrase I often use in my class. Successful teams support each other, have positive relationships and respect everyone. I want my team to believe they are the best and can do anything that they set their minds to. I cannot wait to meet my new class and help them become the best that they can be – we are going to have a brilliant year! If there is anything you wish to talk to me about please come to see me.

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Yieneves Durana

Year 1 Blue
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Mabuhay! Hello, my name is Yieneves, but you can call me Yien. I am from Visayas in the Philippines, from Iloilo City, the city of love. From a young age I knew I wanted to be a teacher, and always helped my brothers, sisters and cousins with their school work. I see teaching as a noble profession, making a difference to each child, and touching young lives. When I was in high school I used to go in an outreach program to help one of the indigenous tribes in our country to help them know how to read and write. After high school I studied at West Visayas State University, and gained my Bachelor in Education, specializing in Elementary Education, and gaining my teaching license. My other passion is music. In high school, I was in the school choir and performed in concerts across many areas of Iloilo City. I do believe music helps the body and the mind work together and I do apply it to my teaching with the children. Exposing children to music during early development helps them learn the sounds and meaning of the words. Dancing to music helps the children to build their motor skills. I have taught in private schools in the Philippines for many years and taught children across all grades of Primary and Foundation. I came to Thailand to further my knowledge of the world and work with children from all nationalities and cultures, which I find very interesting. This is my seventh year working at HeadStart International School and I am excited as I’m staying in Primary this year, it’s a great team and place to teach. I am very excited to meet the children and do lots of fun!

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Stephen Bryans

Year 1 White
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Hello and Sawadee krap! My name is Steve Bryans and I am from Brighton in England. I gained my Undergraduate Degree in Developmental Psychology from the University of Sussex and my Postgraduate Certificate for Education, (PGCE) from the University of East London. I have 14 years of experience working in schools. 8 years as a Year One Classroom Teacher in Thailand, Malaysia, and China; 2 years as a SEN Learning Support Worker in the UK; 2 years teaching English as a foreign language in Korea and Taiwan to an age range of 3 years and above. I have found my teaching experiences to date extremely rewarding and I've enjoyed the challenges that teaching has presented me. When I teach, I inspire a love of learning; I create a positive, fun, and successful teaching environment but maintain high expectations, warranting the inclusion of all pupils, whilst maintaining a good sense of humour. Outside of school, I like to keep fit. I enjoy jogging, playing football, and trying to learn Muay Thai or surfing. I also love traveling. I love to visit different national parks to see animals in the wild. One of my favorite experiences was seeing wild gorillas in Rwanda, Africa. It was incredible! I also love visiting different historical sites. Here in Thailand, you have some amazing temples that I enjoy revisiting time and time again! I am looking forward to meeting my new class. I am very confident that here at Headstart the children will grow and achieve and reach above and beyond my expectations - we will have an amazing year! Please feel free to contact me about any questions you may have.

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Ivy Carlos

Year 1 White
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My name is Ivy B. Carlos, Deputy Teacher of Year 1 White. I am from the Philippines and gained my Bachelor’s degree in Education majoring in Early Childhood Education (ECE) from the University of Northern Philippines at Vigan City, Ilocos Sur. I have experience teaching Year 1 and Year 3 in my home country. I have been working at HeadStart since 2013 and I can say that I am enjoying my stay here. For the past years, I had been assigned different age levels. I love working with children and aim to support them in order to enhance their learning abilities the best that I can. I believe in the saying “Teachers who love teaching teach children to love learning.” I am looking forward to another great and fun year teaching Year 1 White.

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Charlotte Myers

Year 1 Yellow
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My name is Charlotte and I am entering my fourth year of teaching at HeadStart, and my ninth year of teaching. I truly love my job and I am extremely excited to be returning to my favourite year group – Year 1! For me, Year 1 is the most important year group and after teaching in Year 1 for six years, I feel extremely well-prepared and excited to be back in the year group that I know and love. I am a cheerful, happy, nurturing and enthusiastic teacher which has consistently proven a successful approach when working with young children. I believe that when children find school fun and exciting they get develop a love of learning that impacts them so positively, which lasts a lifetime! I demonstrate daily that I love my job and love being with the children and they recognize this, meaning they strive to impress, which leads to happy children who can achieve their full potential. Children always enjoy being in my classroom and this shows with their love for school. I pride myself on building a positive learning environment in which children feel confident, secure and most importantly safe and content. I grew up in the North of England and went to University in Liverpool where I studied Creative Writing. Throughout my degree, I volunteered at local Primary schools, carrying out speech and language therapy with children who did not speak English. Working with EAL children has proven a consistent and focal part of my career and has prepared me well for teaching overseas. To qualify as a teacher, I completed the Graduate Teacher Program at a prestigious school in Buckingham. Upon qualifying as a teacher I taught in England for four years in Leeds, my hometown. I then moved overseas to Chaiyaphum in Thailand where I worked as a Year 1 teacher in a government school. Following this, I taught Year 1 in Vietnam and Spain, before moving to the Middle East where I taught Year 1 in an outstanding international school in Dubai. I felt compelled to return to Thailand, the country I love so much - I love my time here; I love the children, parents, staff and the amazing community and feel extremely blessed to be here. Outside of the classroom I really enjoy being fit and healthy. I do lots of exercise; rugby, running, cycling, conditioning, yoga, weight-lifting, hula hoop dancing – anything! I also love cooking lots of healthy Vegan foods. I also really enjoy singing, sometimes I sing all day - so I will definitely spend lots of time singing with the children and making up silly songs!

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Mency Regalado

Year 1 Yellow
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Hello! My name is Mency Grace Regalado Sosa. I studied at the Adventist University of the Philippines and achieved a Bachelor Degree of Science in Nursing. My first teaching job was in Chumphon in Primary to Secondary, and then I became an English Homeroom Teacher for a Kindergarten 1 English Programme for 3 years. That was the time I realised that I wanted to pursue my teaching career, so I studied for a Diploma in Teacher Education and graduated in August 2017. I am currently studying for my Master’s Degree in Education with a major in Early Childhood. I really enjoy teaching young children. This is my fifth year at HeadStart and what makes this school so special to me is how clever everyone is. I hope that I can share what I have learnt from my own education and share it with the students at HeadStart. Providing a fun, loving and learning environment is what I dream of, so I am looking forward to having many more years at HeadStart International School.

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Michael Marx

Year 2 Blue
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Sawadee krap, my name is Michael Marx and I am originally from South Africa but spent the majority of my life growing up in Cambridge and Hampshire in the UK. I studied at the University of Roehampton, obtaining my teaching degree in Primary Education specialising in Physical Education. During my eight years of teaching, I have gained a wealth of experience working across different year groups and working with a range of people from different backgrounds and cultures. Outside of school, I love finding new ways to challenge myself. I enjoy doing this through sport, where I love watching and taking part in Crossfit. It has allowed me to develop my resilience in overcoming challenges and self-discipline. I have worked at HeadStart since 2018 and have had the joy of working with some great personalities and little minds. I also have the additional responsibility of being the Primary Computing Coordinator. Especially after recent events, using devices and understanding our digital world is becoming more and more vital. I look forward to ensuring the Primary students are more than ready for the challenges they could face and understand how to operate in an ever-expanding digital world. Lastly, I can’t wait to start the learning journey with my new class as well as share with them all that I have learnt so far (as well as learning from them). I aim to work with the children in my class to develop their resilience to challenges both inside and outside of school. I want them to have the means to make informed decisions to keep them safe and make progress in an ever-changing world. I strongly believe in the sense of community and that we thrive better when we work with one another. As we progress through the year and the children develop, please do not hesitate to come and see me to arrange a meeting.

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Jaysel Dollolasa

Year 2 Blue
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Hello! I am Jaysel Anne, Year 2 Blue Deputy Teacher. I’ve been working at HeadStart since 2011 and I am very excited for another year of exploring new knowledge, enjoying activities and experiencing great adventures that I will be spending together with amazing kids in this institution. I am from the Philippines and I graduated with a Bachelor in Elementary Education (BEED) at the University of Antique in 2009. I am currently studying for my Master’s Degree in Education major in Early Childhood Education. I worked for a year as a Public School Teacher in our country until I got an opportunity to work abroad. In 2010, I worked in a Bilingual School in Chalong before joining HeadStart. My experiences throughout these years made me aim to support children enhance their learning capabilities as well as unlock their strengths and overcome their weaknesses. Being a professional educator, I know that every child is special in different ways and it is important to discover a child’s abilities, assets and areas for improvement in order for a teacher to determine what methods and practices should be used to provide a suited learning experience that encourages children to pursue academic excellence. As well as this, I want to give children a safe and motivating environment to discover and involve themselves in every situation wherein they can learn and acquire desirable performances and achievements. I am looking forward to a year full of fun activities and great learnings. See you all.

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Laura Seabourne

Year 2 White
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Hello! My name is Laura Seabourne and I am very excited to be joining the Headstart community and to be teaching in Year 2 White. I grew up near Swindon, a large town in England, before moving to Cheltenham to complete my BA (Hons) degree in Primary Education in 2010. Since completing my degree, I have been teaching at a large primary school in Swindon. During my time at this school, I taught children of various ages, ranging from Nursery to Year 6. I was lucky enough to take a career break to travel a few years ago, during which time I travelled to some of the USA, numerous countries in South-East Asia, Australia and New Zealand; Thailand, of course, was one of my favourite places and I am so pleased to now be living here. My classroom is a happy, friendly and warm environment where children are all treated as individuals- because they are! I strongly believe that children need to feel that they are understood, valued and supported in order to approach learning confidently. In all lessons, I teach with the energy and enthusiasm that I wish to see in the children. I have high aspirations for all children in my care and I am committed to helping them achieve their full potential. I plan opportunities for children to develop independence in their learning, as well as skills to work collaboratively. At times, my classroom will be very quiet and focussed and at others, it will be quite busy and noisy! I am also very passionate about reading and love delving into a good book with my class. Outside of school, I enjoy hiking, yoga and spending time with friends. As a beach lover, I am also looking forward to exploring Phuket’s beautiful beaches! I am also interested in History and love to explore new places and learn about their past. I am really looking forward to working with Year 2 White class this year!

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Vernette Ann Montemayor

Year 2 White
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My name is Vernette and I come from Lucena City, which is a city south of Manila, Philippines. I studied Bachelor of Science in Human Ecology at the University of the Philippines, Los Banos (UPLB), and Bachelor of Science in Business Administration at Enverga University, Lucena City, Philippines. I am a passionate teacher with many years of experience in an ESL program for Korean and Japanese students at the University of the Philippines, and recently in a government school in Thailand. I have also worked in educational settings in the UK and the Middle East. My journey at HeadStart International School started as a Learning Support volunteer and although it was a brief experience, the challenge in that time was an uplifting experience for me. It is my absolute pleasure to work as a Deputy Teacher at HeadStart. Being with our HeadStart children makes me look forward to coming to work every day, and I enjoy being part of a team that is committed to making sure our HeadStart pupils are happy and learning at school.

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Donna Wintersgill

Year 2 Yellow
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Hello and Sawadee ka! My name is Donna Wintersgill and I am the Homeroom Teacher for Year 2 Yellow. This will be my third year of teaching in Year 2 at HeadStart and my second year working as KS1 Phase Leader and English co-ordinator. At University I originally studied Zoology and upon completing my degree I spent a few years conducting research expeditions. It was an amazing experience and I got to visit some incredible countries such as Madagascar and the Virgin Islands. In 2015 I decided to train as a teacher and share my knowledge and passions with others. I taught in the UK for a few years and also completed my Masters in Education, where I was privileged to be in a position where I could bring students into a dementia care setting and watch as incredible friendships developed. For me, relationships are the foundation of a good education, and this at the core of my teaching practice. In the classroom, I like to make lessons fun and engaging using drama and role play to really bring learning to life! Books also play a vital part in my practice, I love engrossing children in a story and capturing their imagination, opening them up to a world of possibilities and witnessing the layers of learning that occur. When I am not working I love to run, I ran the Melbourne Marathon in 2018 and raised over 26,000 baht for a children’s hospice, it was extremely hard but definitely worth it! Diving and snorkelling are also huge passions of mine and I love spending my weekends exploring Phuket’s marine life. I am also very passionate about the environment and love getting involved in beach clean ups around the island, I feel so privileged to be living in such a beautiful place, I want to do my bit to look after it!

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Lyndel Recto

Year 2 Yellow
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Hello, my name is Lyndel Recto and I am glad to start my fourth year as a Deputy Teacher, this year in Year 2 Yellow, at HeadStart International School. I enjoyed working before in Year 4, where I spent two years. I was able to acquire great experience and learning during this time. I am from Sibuyan Island, Romblon, Philippines. I graduated from the Adventist University of the Philippines with a Bachelor of Music and a Major in Music Education. Previously, I worked in one of my home country’s government ministries. I helped abused young people and adults through counselling and motivated them to make in order to make their future better. I love being a teacher and hope to be an inspiration to my students. I hope they grow up to be capable and to do what they want in life, to persevere and stand up and move forward if they fail. I am looking forward to building a wonderful relationship with our students, parents, as well as teachers, in this school and am so thrilled to be here and to work with everyone in the HeadStart team.

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Mark Blacklee

Year 3 Blue
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Hello, it is lovely to meet you! My name is Mark Blacklee and I was born in East Grinstead, UK; however, I spent most of my life in sunny Worthing, on the South coast. I have an undergraduate degree from the Open University, UK. My core units were Childhood/ Youth, English Language and Social Science. I thoroughly enjoyed this period of study which acted as a firm foundation for my post graduate training. To complement this qualification, I then continued to obtain my PGCE from UPHSD. More recently, I am about to complete my Masters in Education (ESOL). I have lived in Thailand for seven years and love the lifestyle, also the people. I formerly lived and worked in Bangkok for nearly three years, teaching the five core subjects: Reading, Listening, GMS, FMS and Free Ex, to KG1. After this, I moved away from the city to rural Phetchaburi, for a year and a half. Here I taught the kindergarten classes all the way to Year 6 Language and Phonics. It was amazing as the only English spoken in the area was at school and it helped me learn Thai. It really was traditional Thailand and an amazing experience. The lure of Phuket was too much and I have now been here working here on the island as a Primary homeroom teacher for three and a half years. I joined HeadStart in 2020 and feel privileged to continue working at such an amazing school. I am a very hands-on teacher and strongly believe TPR and lots of encouragement is the key for young learners. I always provide lessons with plenty of enthusiasm, professionalism and knowledge. I believe in giving my students confidence and supporting them in every way through their academic journey. I will always be there for them, whenever they need me. Hobby wise, I am a keen surfer and kite boarder, also a registered UK instructor for both BKSA and BSUPA. If I have any spare time I like gardening and restoring old two stroke motorcycles. Additionally, I have ten rescue cats to keep me busy. I try to promote a healthy, fun, active lifestyle and believe a positive learning environment is the key to a fantastic year ahead. Welcome to Year 3 Blue!

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Cynthia Lo-Manipol

Year 3 Blue
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My name is Cynthia Lo Manipol, Deputy Teacher of Year 3 Blue. I was born and raised in the Philippines. I am married and blessed with a son. I completed my Bachelor’s Degree in Elementary and Secondary Education in 2010 from the Adventist University of the Philippines at Silang, Cavite. I taught Foundation and Primary level for two years in my home country before coming here to Thailand. I started working at HeadStart in 2012 as a Deputy Teacher. I have a passion for teaching children and watching them grows and progress in every aspect of their lives. Teaching is full of challenges but also very rewarding experiences. I believe that it is important for parents and teachers to work together to create a positive learning environment for each student to achieve their goals and dreams in life. I am excited and looking forward to fun learning experiences in Year 3 Blue this new academic year 2021 – 2022.

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Zoe Harvey-Graham

Year 3 White
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Hello everyone! My name is Zoë Harvey-Graham and I am a homeroom teacher for Year 3 White. I joined HeadStart in 2020 and love working at such a great school. I come from Dublin, Ireland and have a Bachelor of Education with a minor degree in History. I have taught in a number of countries including Ireland, the U.K., Switzerland and Luxembourg. I have mostly taught Year 3 and Year 4. I love every minute of being a teacher and meeting children from all over the world, learning about their cultures and traditions and sharing my own in return. In my classroom, noise is good! I love to hear my pupils chatting and engaging with each other, learning in groups and from each other. In every lesson I teach I aim to make it as fun and engaging as possible. I like to have children learning by doing, therefore we will be completing lots of projects, investigations and enquiries this year. I encourage all my pupils to bring their unique cultures and experiences into the classroom so that we can all learn from each other and grow into multicultural global citizens. I cannot wait to begin the next academic year and get to know all of my students. If there is anything you would like to know or if you have any questions please do not hesitate to come and talk to me. Thank you!

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Clyde Carlos

Year 3 White
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My name is Clyde B. Carlos from the Northern part of the Philippines -the Ilocos Region. I finished my studies at Don Mariano Marcos Memorial State University (DMMMSU) Mid-La union Campus in 2009 with a Bachelor's Degree in Elementary Education majoring in Home Economics (HELE). I successfully passed the Professional Licensure Examination for Teachers (LET) in the same year. I was been teaching primary children at Tirad View Academy in my hometown before moving to Thailand in the year 2010. Throughout my career, I have had the opportunity to work with different levels of children which makes me understand more about my profession and passion. I am an enthusiastic and committed educator who thoroughly enjoys working with children. I am looking forward to another exciting year in Year 3 White.

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Nicola Fallows

Year 3 Yellow
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I originate from England and have worked at HeadStart since 2012. My qualifications consist of two degrees, a Master’s Degree in Criminology and a Bachelor of Science degree in Psychology/Criminology. This was followed by a PGCE in Primary Education focusing on the KS1 and KS2 British curriculum. Teaching is fast paced and challenging and I have gained extensive experience with the teaching of synthetic phonics and value the importance of this programme in order to give children a secure foundation to: understand the complexities of the English language, to be able to read, to write and to spell words. It is wonderful to see how children develop, both socially and academically as time progresses and I enjoy being part of their learning journey. Teaching is my passion and it is a privilege to be part of the pivotal moments when children’s understanding of the world grows. I consider myself to be a friendly, approachable person, but can present myself as firm but fair when the occasion is called for. I freely communicate with parents as I view our relationship as essential in order to ensure that each child is happy, secure and progressing within the learning environment – my door is always open. I enjoy being part of the HeadStart team and look forward to the new academic year of learning in Year 3 Yellow and building a relationship with you and your children.

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Divine Gogo

Year 3 Yellow
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Mabuhay! I am Divine Wyne Gogo, from the Queen City of the South, Cebu, Philippines. I am a Licensed Professional Teacher with experience in teaching ESL, basic engineering for children as well as conducting full-time classes to a large number of students. I graduated from Cebu Normal University in 2019 obtaining a Bachelor’s Degree in Elementary Education-Major in General Education. I took this program because I love being with children; it is very heartwarming and it makes me feel youthful. More so, it is wonderful to see the children learning new concepts and instilling that into their young minds that will stay with them forever. I used to do Arnis, a Filipino sport. I started learning it at the age of eight for self-defence and was an athlete during college days. I was also a choral member from elementary to high school. Even though I am used to performing, I still have stage fright but I am constantly working to conquer it. I also love swimming. In fact, going to the beach is one of my leisure activities. Although still young, I know that I am capable of inspiring and motivating young learners. I am enthusiastic, positive and passionate about my profession. I will be your helping hand whenever you need it; just feel free to approach me and I will be glad to do so!

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Annie Cusworth

Year 4 Blue
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Hello and Sawadee ka! My name is Annie Cusworth and I am Homeroom Teacher for Year 4, Phase Leader for LKS2 and Science Subject Coordinator for Primary. I joined HeadStart in 2017 and thoroughly enjoy working at the school. I have an Undergraduate Degree in Social Anthropology and a Postgraduate Certificate in Primary Education. Prior to moving to Phuket, I taught for 4 years at a Primary School in England. I really enjoy and value my role as a teacher and take great pride in ensuring that all pupils in my care receive the support, encouragement, and challenge to reach their full potential. Making sure that my learning environment is stimulating and engaging is an important part of my practice and I take time to make sure that children feel safe and secure in their classroom. In my classroom, learning activities are fun and creative and motivate my pupils. Developing pupil independence and confidence in their own abilities to solve problems is central to our role as educators and I work hard to encourage pupils to be resilient by teaching them to keep on trying and never give up! I am very much looking forward to this next academic year. If there is anything you wish to talk to me about please come to see me. Thank you and kohb khun ka.

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Josephine Taypoc

Year 4 Blue
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Hi! My name is Josephine Paulino Taypoc. I feel so grateful and excited to be part of HeadStart as the Year 4 Blue Deputy Teacher. In fact, this will be my fourth year in this amazing school. I am from the Northern part of the Philippines and studied at Benguet State University, gaining my Bachelor's Degree in Elementary Education majoring in General Education. My combined years of experience as an ESL and regular school teacher provide me with an avenue for enabling myself to become a more effective and efficient teacher whilst conveying enthusiasm and interest in promoting a dynamic, conducive, exciting, and positive learning environment that empowers both the teacher and students to pursue learning. I believe passionately in knowing the students’ personalities, strengths and weaknesses allowing them to explore, unleash and enhance their potential, ignite imagination and instil a love of learning. May this be a year full of memories and learning. I am so excited to teach and get to know all of you!

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Jen Rapkins

Year 4 White
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My name is Jen Rapkins. I joined HeadStart in August 2018 as the Year 4 White Homeroom Teacher after teaching for five years in an international school in Bangkok. My move from the city to the island means I can still indulge my love of travel and scuba diving by continuing to explore the wonders of Thailand, Asia and beyond. Before moving to Thailand in 2013, I was teaching for many years in a middle school in Poole, Dorset in the UK. Despite originally specialising in teaching Key Stage 1, the majority of my teaching experience since then has been in Key Stage 2 and even Year 7 French! My passion for teaching has grown with each year and it is my privilege to work with each and every child and guide them along their journey as lifelong learners. I believe that by capturing their interest and imagination through engaging and innovative lessons in a safe and stimulating environment, children will strive to remain resilient, show consideration and be the best they can be. In turn, they will effectively develop their abilities to communicate, to collaborate and to think both creatively and critically. As the new academic year starts, I am looking forward to getting to know all the children in my class, along with their families, throughout this year.

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Johanna Pon-an

Year 4 White
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Hello! My name is Johanna and I’ve been teaching at HeadStart since 2017. I spent 2 years as a shadow teacher and this will be my third year as a deputy teacher. I am extremely excited to meet you all and begin teaching children at our fantastic school. As a special educator, teaching exceptional children is my passion and I can't imagine doing anything else. We will find exciting ways to learn and grow together every day! Looking forward to a year of fun-filled learning adventures. I am from the Philippines but I have been living in Phuket for six years now. I graduated with a Bachelor's degree in Special Education focused on children with Intellectual Disabilities as well as the Gifted & Talented. I am a licensed professional teacher and have experience with organising learning activities tailored to students with special needs, learning capacities, standards, and Intellectual Disabilities. I’ve been a Homeroom Teacher in a Bilingual School here in Phuket and my two-year broad experiences exposed me to many different teaching philosophies that have ultimately helped to shape my own personal philosophies for teaching and education. I love learning new things and always try to stay up to date on the latest teaching practices. As a special education teacher, I believe that every child is special, unique and has the ability to learn in distinct ways. Every student can learn best when he/she is engaged and having fun. It is the responsibility of the teacher to discover each child's strengths and weaknesses and use this information to promote learning and development. I believe that parents and teachers should work together as partners to help provide an education that encourages students to pursue academic excellence to the best of their abilities. In addition, it is important to provide children with a warm, safe, and inviting learning environment where they can play, discover, and grow. With an appropriate classroom and the proper guidance and instruction, I believe young children will develop a positive attitude towards education, along with the self-confidence and independence necessary to become successful adults in the future.

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Ben Stephenson

Year 4 Yellow
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Sawadee khap! My name is Ben Stephenson and I am the Homeroom Teacher for Year 4 Yellow. Having arrived in August 2020, my first year at HeadStart was a fantastic, enriching experience and I cannot wait to start my second year here. In 2011, I completed a Bachelor’s Degree in English Language and then trained as a teacher and completed a Postgraduate Certificate of Education. This upcoming year will be my eighth year as a teacher and my second year working outside of the UK. I have been lucky enough to teach in all four years of Key Stage 2 and I thoroughly enjoy working within the Primary phase. My primary focus whilst teaching is to ensure that all of the children in my care feel happy, safe and encouraged. It is my job as their teacher to help them progress and reach their full potential. My classroom ethos is focused around teamwork, challenge and resilience and I do my best to ensure that all of my lessons are creative and fun for all. Teaching is a collaborative process and I am excited to learn from the children as well. I have travelled extensively around the world to explore and to raise money for charity and I cannot wait to continue exploring Thailand and its rich, diverse culture. If there is anything you wish to discuss with me, please feel free to email me to arrange a meeting. Khob khun khap.

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Joahna Bacsarsa

Year 4 Yellow
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Hello Everyone! I’m Ms. Joahna Amor Bacsarsa. I grew up in the City of Golden Friendship Cagayan de Oro City, Philippines. I graduated with a Bachelor’s degree in Elementary Education major in Special Education. I’m a Professional licensed teacher in the Philippines and lucky to have a license teaching in Thailand as well. Teaching is not an easy job because it needs heart and dedication. As a teacher, you are intended to inspire each student to learn and be curious in many ways because that is learning all about. And I am happy to keep inspiring students and create the best seeds of their learning with enthusiasm and creativity. As a famous quote says, Education is the passport to the future, for tomorrow belongs to those who prepare for it today. For many years I handled different levels of students and learned to love how they embrace and react towards new things differently. On the other hand, I do love Arts as my passion, to be exact, painting and sketching which I usually do during my leisure time. When I was young I saw those different colors as the most beautiful art ever and now I’m happy to share it with children and excited to teach to our baby soon when she grows up because art makes people relaxed, calm, and focused. As Dalai Lama says, the purpose of our lives is to be happy. Keep inspiring students, encourage them to learn in various ways and be lifelong learners with enthusiasm. Live, learn, love and be happy!!!

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Carla Whitehead

Year 5 Blue
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Hello and Sawadee ka! My name is Carla Whitehead and I come from a small city in the South West of England called Gloucester. I started teaching at HeadStart International School in 2019 and I am very excited to continue my teaching journey here this year as the Year 5 Blue Homeroom Teacher. My teaching journey began in 2010 at The University of Gloucestershire where I completed a BA (Hons) degree in Primary Education. I then went on to teach in a local primary school for six years before deciding to seek an international job to enable me to combine my passions of teaching and travel. I absolutely love living in Phuket and I am extremely thankful for this opportunity in my life. I am an enthusiastic and dedicated teacher with a strong belief that children should be given a wide range of opportunities in order to promote a life-long love of learning. I enjoy looking for ways to encourage self-identity and individuality in the classroom by teaching creatively. I also provide as many opportunities as I can in my teaching to endorse empathy and respect for others and the environment. Outside of the classroom I enjoy hiking, keeping fit, photography and spending time at the beach. After such a brilliant and rewarding two years at HeadStart, I am really looking forward to my third year here and getting to know the children and parents of my new class while facilitating a learning environment where all students can fulfil their potential in a fun and engaging environment.

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Sharon Lanticse

Year 5 Blue
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Hi, I am Sharon Faith T. Lanticse from Davao, the Southern part of the Philippines. I am a double- degree graduate, with a Bachelor Of Science in Nursing as well as Secondary Education Major in Biological Science. Working with children in one of the schools in Khonkaen, Thailand for 3 years has strengthened my love of learning especially when you see how excited and happy the kids are in your class. Teaching small children requires a lot of qualities. All of this shapes my classroom practice to become more effective. The thing I like most about teaching is my students. I love interacting with them, I love learning from them, I love how passionate they are in learning and how they connect it with their daily lives. I am committed to professional ethics, the high standards of practice and the care and education of young children. I am caring, gentle and enthusiastic when working with children and I am committed to social and academic growth and the development of every child. I work hard to create a positive classroom atmosphere that is stimulating and encouraging, as well as appropriately inclusive to the needs of every student. In my spare time, I enjoy meeting up with friends and family. I also enjoy meeting new people. I enjoy reading, especially if it is related to cooking/baking; I love spending time in the kitchen. I enjoy watching documentaries, action, horror and romantic-comedy films. I love travelling around and exploring new places. Joining Headstart is a very exciting opportunity for me and I am so happy to be here. I am looking forward to making a significant, positive impact on the lives of each of my students. I am also looking forward to helping my co-teachers to continue to be effective educators and delivering effective instruction that raises student achievement.

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Kathryn Parkin

Year 5 White
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Hello and Sawadee ka! My name is Kathryn Parkin. I am originally from England and grew up in Windsor, Berkshire. At the age of eight, my family immigrated to Johannesburg, South Africa, and after finishing my high school education, I studied Business Science at the University of Cape Town majoring in Organisational Psychology. I started my teaching journey after arriving in Thailand in 2013. I have worked in several schools in Phuket mainly working as an upper primary homeroom teacher and completed my Postgraduate Certificate in Education (International) through the University of Nottingham in 2016. In my classroom, I strive to create a positive, safe and supportive learning environment that not only helps students grow but also encourages them to flourish both academically and holistically. I believe this is best achieved by establishing, at the outset, positive relationships with each child and using this to tailor lessons that are relatable, engaging, and meet their individual learning needs. In my spare time, I enjoy reading, running, and spending time with my family exploring all that Phuket has to offer. I am really looking forward to the year ahead and am excited to get to know all of my students in Year 5 and their families.

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Deborah Langcao

Year 5 White
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Hello! I am Deborah but most prefer to call me Dheb. I joined HeadStart as a teacher in 2018 and it excites me to be here for another potentially great academic year. Prior to HeadStart, I studied at the University of the Cordilleras, gaining a degree in Bachelor of Secondary Education major in English. After graduation, I was able to pass my board exam and get my Philippine teaching license in the same year. Additionally, during my first year in this school, I enrolled in my Master’s Degree in Education and was able to graduate last July this year. I was given the chance to gain experience in teaching, both in a Philippine and Thai setting. Those experiences gave me opportunities to work with a variety of administrators, co-teachers and students. I believe that all children are unique and have something special that they can bring to their own education. I will assist my students to express themselves and accept themselves for who they are, as well as embrace the differences of others. Every classroom has their own unique community, my role as the Deputy Teacher will be to assist each child in developing their own potential and learning styles. With utmost effort, I will be a guide in each child’s path to the future.

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Dan Nicholson

Year 5 Yellow
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My name is Dan Nicholson and I am originally from Grimsby, in the North East of England. I have lived in Thailand since 1999 and so I now consider it to be my second home. I began my International school teaching career as an Early Years teacher in Bangkok. After 5 years in the capital, I moved to Pattaya, where I lived for a total of 12 years; working as an Early Years teacher and then as a Primary Year 2 teacher. I completed a BSc with the Open University and then earned a PGCE (International) from the University of Nottingham while working as a full time teacher. I thoroughly enjoy the challenge and rewards of teaching pupils from diverse cultural, linguistic and educational backgrounds. I believe in setting high expectations for attainment and behaviour and that a positive attitude to learning is a key component of success. I try to engage students with a combination of individual and collaborative learning opportunities, which allow them to build on their existing knowledge and skills. I think that providing tasks with the right balance of challenge and reward is the key to motivating students and fostering a love of learning. I’m a keen amateur cricketer and spent 5 years as a player and committee member at Pattaya Cricket Club, which included several playing trips to Phuket. I enjoy hiking, cycling and playing the bass guitar; which I do with more enthusiasm than skill. I’ve been with HeadStart since 2017 and I’m pleased to be part of the school’s continuing growth. I look forward to getting to know both students and parents in the coming weeks.

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Jo Ann Capalihan

Year 5 Yellow
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Hi, my name is Jo Ann and I am the Year 5 Yellow Deputy Teacher. This is my 9th year at HeadStart and I am very excited about continuing to work with the children here. I am from the city of love that is known for its Spanish Colonial churches and old houses, Iloilo City, Philippines. I graduated from the University of San Agustin in 2004 with the degree of Bachelor of Elementary Education, and started teaching in 2005 in my home country and came to Thailand. Throughout my career, I have had the opportunity to educate students with a variety of educational needs. This has given me a fantastic range of experience and I am very passionate about the importance of education. I believe that teachers are life-long educators and we never stop learning ourselves. The more teachers can learn, the more they can impact others. I’m eager to inspire, uplift and share the joy with my students by emphasizing the fun in education and fostering a love of learning. I am sincerely looking forward to our educational journey through the new academic year!

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Kirsty Hark

Year 6 Blue
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Hello and Sawadee ka! My name is Kirsty and I am from Manchester in the North West of England. I have a degree in History and Sociology from The University of Leeds and gained my Post Graduate Certificate of Education at The University of Manchester through the TeachFirst graduate programme. I am now entering my eighth year of teaching at the primary level and my fourth year of teaching here at HeadStart. Alongside being a Year 6 Homeroom Teacher, I am also the Subject Coordinator for Primary Maths and the Phase Leader for Upper Key Stage 2. I have experience working across both Key Stage 1 and 2 and am very passionate about developing positive relationships with pupils, as well as providing creative and engaging learning opportunities. I aim to inspire a love of learning within children and develop inquisitive and creative learners who are keen to investigate and ask questions throughout their learning journey. Through creating both a safe and challenging learning environment, I am also keen to develop resilient learners with a commitment to overcoming challenges with the support and collaboration of both their peers and teachers. I believe it is vital to provide children with a wealth of experiences and opportunities in order for them to flourish in all areas of the curriculum. I have a passion for reading and am keen to install my love of reading and stories within the pupils. Outside of the classroom, I also have a keen interest in History and learning about the past and culture of other places. I therefore love to travel and enjoy exploring the many beautiful places both within and around Phuket. I am really looking forward to the year ahead and can’t wait to support the progress your children will make throughout their time in Year 6.

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Hydie Tuldague

Year 6 Blue
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I am Hydie and I graduated Bachelor of Science in Secondary Education at Saint Louis University in the Philippines. I joined HeadStart in 2018 and it has been a wonderful journey so far. I have taught in both private and public schools in the Philippines. Aside from teaching my major subject, I have also had the opportunity to teach English as an additional language to students of various nationalities including Japanese, Chinese, Vietnamese, Taiwanese and Koreans. I have gained valuable insights on how we could get along well with others despite differences in culture, language and age. I have also spent some of my weekends and summer breaks teaching children in an NGO in my town as well as in other places. Joining HeadStart in 2018 made me see how all my experiences would be very helpful in effectively teaching international students. I am still learning a lot every day and from everyone I encounter, every student and every teaching partner that I get to work with. It has been interesting since and every term presents new challenges which also bring me a sense of satisfaction because I succeeded in accomplishing my tasks and found ways to figure things out. I am always grateful for all the gratitude I receive and am looking forward to another fun-filled school year. I can only promise to do my best because I know my future students are going to work hard. I am very excited and looking forward to the year ahead and having new experiences here while contributing to the growth of HeadStart.

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Alex Bell

Year 6 White
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Hi! My name is Alex Bell and I am the homeroom teacher for Year 6 White for this academic year. Having spent a year teaching at a school in my hometown of Farnham, in the UK, in 2019-20, I joined HeadStart in August 2020 and felt right at home from day one! I am passionate about contributing to the education and development of all the children at HeadStart and take great pride and pleasure in being an integral member of the school community. I actually moved to Phuket for the first time way back in 2001 as a PADI Scuba Diving Instructor, and returned to live on this magical island for the first time in 15 years! In the intervening years, I lived and taught in two far flung corners of Thailand – Sisaket in the north-east and Chiang Mai in the north. I completed my PGCE in the UK in 2011 and worked as a Year 5 and 6 teacher at a British International School in Chiang Mai until the summer of 2019. My 20 years in Thailand has enabled to me pursue my great passions of exploration and experience, something I hope to share with everyone in the HeadStart community, especially the children. I strongly believe that children learn best when they can make connections to their everyday experiences. I make every effort to ensure that learning both in and out of the classroom is holistic, creating lifelong learners who value the world they live in and the people around them. I trust that we will all work hard, make great memories and have a lot of laughs on our learning journey together!

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Hannah Soriba

Year 6 White
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My name is Hannah, and I come from the city of smiles, Bacolod City in the Philippines. I completed my Bachelor in Elementary Education and then passed the Licensure Examination for Teachers in the year 2005. I am currently taking up a Masters of Arts in Education Major in Educational Management. This is my third year working at HeadStart and will remain as a deputy teacher in Year 6 White. I’ve been living in Thailand for 13 years and have had the opportunity to teach various subjects to all levels from kindergarten to college students. My exposure to different educational settings has made me flexible and easy to adapt to new situations and faculty concepts. Throughout my career, I have followed the philosophy of motivating and developing an urge of learning amongst my students as I want them to be excited about coming to school, engaged purposely in their learning and be aware of their potential. I am a very active person. Outside of the classroom, I love to go outdoors running and swimming. I do Yoga and Muay Thai weekly and I also have a passion for street photography, travelling and writing.

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Sean Clarke

Year 6 Yellow
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Hello and sawasdee krap! My name is Sean Clarke and I am originally from Yorkshire in the North of England, starting my sixth year teaching. I am beginning my second year as homeroom teacher of Year 6 Yellow after two years in Year 4 at HeadStart. Prior to embarking on my teaching adventure in Thailand, I worked as a videographer for a media company after completing an undergraduate degree in Film and Television production. I enjoyed my time in the media industry; however I missed working with children. I then completed a PGCE in Primary Education and began my teaching career near my home town in Leeds, England. After two years of teaching and working as the school's PE coordinator, I developed and improved my own teaching skills as well as the attitude towards sport and exercise across the school community. Under my guidance the school received a Gold active schools award for the two consecutive years that I held that position. I strongly value student success outside of academics. During my three years in Phuket I have really enjoyed immersing myself in the local culture and island life. Along with football, rugby, swimming, yoga and fitness, I have taken up surfing; a sport that I am immensely enjoying on the island’s beautiful beaches. Last year I took over running the Primary Student Council. Myself and the council really wanted to make a positive impact on the overall school experience for the children. For one of our projects, we designed and painted a ‘buddy bench’ to help children make relationships and feel safe at break times. Look out for it in the school playground! In my classroom you will find a fun environment where hard work and laughter go hand in hand, as well as an environment where children are supported, encouraged, challenged and engaged in their learning. I am very excited to teach Year 6 this year and all of the added challenges; I am looking forward to make sure that all of the children are prepared for life after Primary school.

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Ayce Rico

Year 6 Yellow
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My name is Ayce Rico and I am from the Philippines. I have been living in Phuket since 2010. I am very excited about this academic year as I remain a Deputy Teacher of Year 6 Yellow. I am looking forward to my 11th year at HeadStart International School. I graduated in 2010 from Romblon State University with the degree in Bachelor of Science in Business Administration major in Management and I successfully completed my Diploma in Teaching Education at Ifugao State University in 2016. Working at HeadStart for almost 11 years, I learned the importance of relationships with students; taking the time to know them, what they stand for, and what they like. I have had the opportunities to educate my students, where I aim to be flexible and efficient when performing my duties. I continue to develop my passion, helping students to engage in a creative and fun learning experience. I hope to encourage the children to develop and also inspire them to have a lifelong love of learning. Outside school, I love to do running, cooking, and singing with friends.

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Maripet Porte

Music Teacher
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Hello! I am Maripet Victoria from The Philippines. I studied at Benguet State University with a degree in Education and took English as my field of specialisation. Previously, I worked as an Online English Tutor for 4 years after graduating. After that, I worked as a Violin and Basic Piano Teacher at a music school. At church, I was part of directing musical productions and managing music tutorials. I also worked as a private tutor, teaching music instruments and English for about 5 years before having the opportunity to work at HeadStart International in 2017. My experience in teaching English Language, instruments and directing musical productions, gave me an opportunity to work with different age groups from ages 3 to 49 years old. Those experiences made me understand the true meaning of teaching and learning and that is, “age does not matter in learning and in teaching, as long as we have the passion for it, we are able to accomplish so much.” As a teacher, I have learned and gained more understanding on the value of time given to each of the students’ learning. I am excited to be able to share what I have learned over the years and be a part of the learning journey of the students.

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Airl Mindaro

Art Teacher
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Hello, my name is Airl. I was born on one of the islands in the southern Philippines named Zamboanga del Sur but I grew up in the northern part -Baguio City. I graduated from Benguet State University with a Bachelor of Secondary Education Major in Biological Sciences. I have been working at HeadStart International School since 2015 as a deputy teacher. This year, I teach Foundation and Primary Art and I hope to continue working as an Art Teacher. I am passionate about motivating young people to make a change and inspire them to be creative and resourceful students. I want them to dream big, do extraordinary things and keep moving even how many times they fail. I establish good relationships with students and parents and love them despite their unique differences. I believe that every child needs a hand to care and touch their hearts and I am here to be part of their journey. Every time the children come into the classroom, I will do my best to provide a happy, loving and friendly environment for everyone that the children can call it home. I am looking forward to an exciting year.

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