In the past couple of years, the primary voices on our team have transitioned to new positions in their schools. Betsy Hubbard, who was a K/1 looping teacher for over a decade, teaches third grade. Deb Frazier, who taught first grade for many years, works as a technology coach. As a result, our co-author team has been searching for a K-2 classroom teacher to fill this void for several months.
It’s my pleasure to welcome Kelsey Corter as a TWT co-author. She taught first grade in Sun Prairie, Wisconsin, and now teaches kindergarten at P.S. 59, which is a TCRWP model literacy school. Kelsey believes one of her most important roles as an educator is helping each of her students identify as writers, rely on writing for many purposes, and find joy in writing – while keeping inquiry, choice, inclusion, and play at the center.
Early on, Kelsey built a strong foundation and passion for balanced literacy, thanks to an unparalleled mentorship with her first literacy coach — now teaching soulmate — Gina Neumann. When Gina arranged a home-grown TCRWP Summer Institute with the inspirational Sarah Picard Taylor, Kelsey knew she had to be closer to the Project and progressive teaching in NYC. Luckily, Kelsey’s husband is from New York City, so before long, they were driving a truck across the country with a crying cat in tow.
Since moving to New York, Kelsey has been incredibly fortunate to work closely with brilliant literacy teachers and consultants, including Kristine Mraz and Shanna Schwartz, and frequently attends institutes and workshops with TCRWP and Bank Street College of Education. Kelsey’s classroom is featured in Kids 1st From Day 1, by Christine Hertz and Kristine Mraz.
Kelsey squeezes into a Brooklyn apartment with her husband, 70-pound dog, cat, ever-growing library, and a large collection of tropical plants and succulents (including an 8.5-foot-tall cactus). Kelsey and her family make frequent trips to off-leash time at Brooklyn parks, Long Island beaches, Connecticut mountains, and their other home, Wisconsin.
You can follow Kelsey’s reflections and discoveries at http://smallsteps.blog, on Twitter @kelsey_corter, and on Instagram @theorganicclassroom. Check back this Friday, April 27th when her first post goes live on TWT.