Woman Remembers Why She Teaches
Even on a bad day, Academie da Vinci teacher knows there's a reason she works so hard.
Name and Age: Wendy Stanziano, 36
Position and school: Fourth grade teacher at Academie da Vinci Charter School
Hometown: Pittsburgh, PA
No. of years at school: Two
What's your favorite part of teaching?
"I genuinely do enjoy working with the kids. I enjoy planning lessons and coming up with new and interesting ways for kids to learn."
Do you have anything you dislike about your job?
"I don't enjoy the lack of time and money."
What inspired you to teach?
"I really always liked school. ... I was always academically successful. I enjoyed school, so that was a big part of it. [There was a part of running my own classroom and being the center of attention all day long that seemed really attractive.] And that part is fun, but it's not all about that, and you figure it out pretty quickly."
What do you like about Dunedin?
"I don't live here, but I work here. There's always stuff going on. I have little kids and a husband ... and it's nice that [Dunedin is] always having stuff to do."
What is your most memorable classroom moment?
"The first year I taught fourth grade, I had a boy in my class that could barely read. He was at least two years behind. He had a great personality and he was actually pretty darn good at math. One day we were having a discussion about borrowing (in math) and [the students were having a hard time understanding]. He got up and actually taught the lesson. ... He actually got up and with amazing detail explained why [you carry over...].
"[At the end of the year] we went on a skating field trip, and I couldn't skate. He actually taught me to skate. He said, 'You spent all year teaching me how to read. Now I'm gonna teach you how to skate' -- because I couldn't even stand up on a pair of skates. It was one of those moments that you realize, 'This is why I do this. This is why I'm here.'"