Betsy Henry grew up in Algona, Iowa. As a high school student, she served as a peer helper in the elementary. Her sister is a teacher and her mom worked in a school. But she really credits her fifth grade teacher as her biggest inspiration to become one. “I don’t know what it was about her but I knew that was what I wanted to do,” Henry says.
This is Henry’s fourth year in teaching. She received her bachelors in education with endorsements in reading, language arts, and early childhood education from Simpson College. Her first three years were spent with kindergartners in Carlisle. This is her first year as a third grade teacher in the Winterset school district.
Henry easily implements whole brain teaching in her classroom. “This is a buzz topic in education and we learned it through school wide professional development at the beginning of the year,” she says. For example, her students repeat the page number five times together out loud when she prompts them. When she wants to redirect their attention she says, “Class, class, class.” The students respond with, “Yes, yes, yes.” Or if she is feeling more lighthearted she says, “Classity class.” The students know to respond with, “Yessity, yes.” They enjoy the repetition of the words and know exactly what to expect from her when she uses them.
When asked about the difference between kindergartners and third graders Henry says, “I love third graders interest in the things they are learning. They are also able to work independently and creatively.”
As a new teacher, Henry is surprised how attached and how much she cares for all of her students. “You learn about every part of each student,” she says. “I also learned quickly when you have your own classroom you have to do it all. When thinking about becoming a teacher you think more about how to teach and what to teach and not how you’ll feel about your students.”
During her past summer months, Henry has been a nanny and a tutor. This summer she is looking forward to being a mom to her almost one year old son. Henry is married to Josh Henry who is also a teacher and coach with the Winterset school district.
What do you like best about your teacher?