Born and raised in Anchorage, Alaska, I have always had a strong sense of adventure and creativity. It's easy for one to get bored in the middle of nowhere so therefore, I have a lifetime's experience in finding ways to create and entertain! This has now lead to a career in Musical Theatre. I am a singer, dancer and avid Disney fan, having both worked for Disney as a performer, as well as having been raised on all of the classic films.
Childcare has always played a major part in my life. I grew up with a younger brother whom I adore and would babysit almost daily during my pre-teen years. As I got older, I would assist my mother - our Sunday school/nursery teacher- in her classroom.
At 15, I went to a boarding arts high school in Michigan, where I ended up becoming the Sunday School teacher at my local church there and that was when the childcare bug really hit me. I had so much fun making crafts with the kids, singing our favorite songs and learning together! Once I got to college (University of Michigan, BFA Musical Theatre), my professors quickly pegged me as a lover-of-children and I began babysitting for them whenever my schedule would allow it. Post-college I took a year off from performing and became a substitute teacher for a school year, working all throughout the Anchorage School District. I had an incredible time teaching students all the way from preschool to high school. I taught everything from math to music and everything in between and worked with students of varying backgrounds and learning abilities. I loved how much I learned from my students and how much joy and laughter they brought me every day.
I've lived in NYC for a year now, pursuing my acting career but I am also so exited to still be able to work with children as I do so. I spent the past year working with a wonderful family with three kinds - one boy, 5, and two girls, 8 and 10. I would pick them up after school and we would play at parks or at home or I would take them to playdates and after school activities. At least once a week I would also make them dinner, read to them and put them to bed. Of course, having a BFA in Musical Theatre, this would always include a song or two as a goodnight lullaby! As a creative person myself, I LOVE doing creative activities with kids. Putting on performances, playing cards or board games, writing creative stories together, ANY crafts - especially holiday and seasonal crafts to display in the house are always a favorite and of course, karaoke! I also love learning new activities from my students. For example, I worked for a family who's son was very into competitive origami and he would often teach me! (Sadly, it is not my calling but I loved learning!) I think it's so important to keep children engaged, so if that means a good chat about their lives and things that interest them, baking the perfect chocolate-chip cookie, an exciting game of Freeze Dance or a quiet hour of origami, I'm fully in it, 100%.
I am CPR/first-aid certified in infants and adults and have quite a bit of experience with students with learning disabilities.