Brady Weller has been enjoying more than a year of firsts as a teacher with Community Christian School in Fort Dodge.
In the last school year, Weller was a first-year teacher getting to know her blended class of first and second graders.
Now, in her second year as a full-time teacher, Weller says it’s again a year of firsts as the school settles in to its first year in its new home at the former Holy Rosary School in Fort Dodge.
“I think each year is totally different,” she says. “We have different kids. Even though I have some of the same kids, it’s a completely different mix of kids.”
The second graders in her classroom were with her last year as first graders. The ability to see the kids grow and develop and then learn to help the younger kids is a real delight in such blended classes.
“Second graders help the first graders almost every single day,” she says. “I say to the first graders, ‘Watch the second graders,’ and they really do learn from each other.”
And, by becoming “teachers” themselves, they may deepen their own understanding of the subject matter.
A native of Manson and graduate of Pomeroy/Palmer High School, Weller earned her bachelor’s degree in elementary education from Buena Vista University in Storm Lake. She isn’t sure if she always knew she wanted to be a teacher, but she remembers fondly “playing school” with her younger sister.
“I always liked teacher,” Weller says. “I was the oldest in my family I would always play school with my younger sister.”
Now with a classroom of her own, Weller says she enjoys teaching just about every subject.
“I really enjoy art, that’s been one of my favorites,” she says. “It’s not just arts and crafts, you an also learn history through art and even do some science stuff in art.”
She also enjoys reading to her class and watching the wonder in their eyes as they listen to a new story.
Weller says she also enjoys the Bible time and devotions with students each day. In a Christian school, Weller enjoys the freedom to express their faith and really pray for each other from day to day.
“I really enjoy the people and the environment here,” she says.