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Creative Problem Solving is Woman's Teaching Objective

Teaching children to express their creativity leads them to become better thinkers and innovators, Catholic school teacher says.

Name and Age: Barbara Clasen, 36

Position and School:  Clasen is a fourth-grade teacher at 

Years Teaching:  12 

Years at this school: 3  

Hometown: Flushing, N.Y.

Why did you choose to teach in Dunedin? 

I was a member of the parish and heard about an opening at the school. I was excited to have the opportunity to teach in the same community where I worship.

What inspired you to become a teacher?

Being from a large family, I have always been around children. It just seemed natural for me to teach.

What is your favorite part of teaching?

I love the moments when the students make connections between lessons learned in the classroom and the real world.

Most memorable moment in teaching?

Each year, I take my class on an overnight field trip to St. Augustine. Those trips are always memorable.

What one idea or concept do you try to instill in your students? 

I try to teach them to be creative. This leads to better problem-solving skills and teaches my students that there are endless possibilities and solutions. 

As a lay teacher, in a religious environment, was it necessary to adjust your teaching style? 

No, as a Catholic school educator, my teaching style is that of my public school peers. The only difference is that I can incorporate my spiritual and religious beliefs in all aspects of the day. It is actually my favorite part of being a Catholic school teacher. To be able to live, model and teach my faith is the best part of my job.

Clasen has two children and teaching at affords her ongoing contact with them because her youngest is in the early development class and her eldest is in second grade.

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