Meet Walking Classroom Ambassador Nancy Carroll. A fourth grade teacher at Boyden Elementary School in Massachusetts, Nancy is currently in her second year incorporating the Walking Classroom with her students. Nancy has worked in education for 27 years, all of them at Boyden!
What are your memories of yourself when you were in fourth grade?
At ten, I LOVED school! My fourth grade teacher made learning so exciting. We played Jeopardy, sat in groups, and did two plays! I also loved playing with the neighborhood kids and my family.
What led you to become an educator?
Working at a job I was unhappy with for many years, I decided to go back to school at night to get my Bachelor’s degree in Elementary Education. After some soul searching, I came to the realization that my teachers had such an impact upon my life that I would like to go into education (and hopefully positively impact others in a similar way).
I believe EVERY student CAN and WILL learn. It might involve taking risks in the classroom, but the climate created in my classroom is one where mistakes are a pathway to learning. Allowing students a voice and choice in their own education is equally important to learning!
What is your favorite content area/topic to teach? Why?
Hard to choose! I guess I love teaching ELA because I love introducing students to new books, stories, and poems, and helping them discover their own writing talents.
What is your favorite podcast or Walking Classroom memory and why?
I have too many favorites to choose just one! My favorite memory came in June at the end of the first year. I decided to let each student choose the podcast they were interested in the most. On their own, students decided to listen to podcasts as groups. The sharing and learning that happened after those walks was amazing. Students started sharing what they were learning, which got their classmates interested in those new podcasts! Lots of “oohs” and “aahs” resulted!
What is your best teaching memory?
Many years ago, we used to produce a fourth grade Shakespearean play. One year toward the end of the play on a field trip, the entire busload of students recited Macbeth from beginning to end in unison! It just validated the time spent working on it, and it showed how each student had internalized the words!
What advice would you give to a new teacher?
Connect with your students everyday! Greet each one by name at the door each morning, and take the time to listen to their stories.
What do you like to do in your spare time?
In my spare time I enjoy reading, kayaking, singing in a chorus, doing yoga, and my all time fave: spending time with family!
Name something you’d like to cross off your bucket list.
I would love to say that I was the Teacher on the Trail during the Iditarod Race, but if not, I’d just love to say I got to Alaska!