Glens Falls City School District recognizes national Teacher Appreciation Week by highlighting committed and enthusiastic teachers from every one of our schools each day of the week! Read on for an inside interview with Shannon Fox—one of the most dynamic teachers around our district.
Shannon Fox is a kindergarten teacher at Kensington Road School. She graduated from Hudson Falls High School, and Castleton State College for her undergraduate and masters.
What is the best thing about teaching at Kensington?
I know this is going to sound corny but everything! The KRS crew welcomed me from day one and continues to amaze me with their dedication to the kids and to each other. Another bonus is when I taught in Hudson Falls, the kindergarteners were in one building and would go to the Primary building for grades 1-3. Here, at KRS, I love that I get to see my students grow and blossom through the 4th grade. I still get my hugs when we pass in the hallway.
Describe your favorite lesson or unit from this year … and what did the students think of it?
It’s hard to pinpoint one lesson or unit in Kindergarten. Kindergarten is a huge year for learning. Some children enter kindergarten identifying a letter as a shape or a number; yet, leave kindergarten reading and writing! I love teaching reading. One of my favorite units is: Becoming Avid Readers. As a kindergarten teacher, we can teach children how to read but teaching them how to enjoy reading is very powerful. It is so rewarding to watch our young readers make connections with print while utilizing the tools and strategies they have learned. It is equally rewarding to watch students have “book talks” with each other as well as volunteering to read in front of the class. Everyday we celebrate how far they’ve come!
How was pandemic teaching for you?
My grandmother used to say, “It’s not the challenges you face, it’s how you face the challenge.” I have kept that in the forefront of mind while teaching since March 13, 2020. In order to make virtual learning possible, I learned a lot about Google Classroom , Google Meets and how to maximize my time teaching with online learners. I do have to say, families have been incredibly supportive and helpful with their little ones which made my job easier.
How are you doing now?
I’m doing well because the kids don’t have to wear masks. Seeing their little faces smile when they come through the door every morning is a great way to start a day. I have a wonderful group of students this year. They are sweet, kind and have a drive to learn. I am going to miss them next year.
Can you describe your efforts outside the classroom for kids as well?
I like to go to tee ball games and lacrosse practices. (This year has been harder because of my daughter’s lacrosse schedule.) On my runs and walks around the neighborhood, I love to see my kiddos outside the classroom. They always seem a little shocked to see me out and about. I have had a lot of birthday invites but haven’t been able to attend one yet. My favorite story is the time when my daughter, Phoebe and I walked to every one of my students’ houses during May of 2020 so I could write a chalk message on their driveways. Phoebe reminds me quite often it was a 7.2 mile pandemic march. The best part was when I woke up the next morning and had a message from one of my students on my driveway! Yes, it brought me to tears.