At the beginning of my third year of teaching, my husband was offered a role at Aspetar Sports Hospital. He moved to Qatar first and I joined him soon after he began. I visited several schools once I arrived in the country but chose NAISAK because of its warm, welcoming feel and its fantastic approach to teaching and learning. NAISAK is unique because it is a relatively new school that is adapting and changing rapidly whilst maintaining high standards and a consistent approach – something, I don’t feel, is easily achieved. It has a fantastic warm, community feel which is an amazing achievement in such a relatively short space of time.
I am excited by my new role as Foundation Stage Leader this academic year. This year I would like to focus on continuing to develop my most important resources, the teachers and learning assistants. Education is dynamic and changeable and it is important to keep up to date with the newest and best teaching and learning strategies. I believe that by continually challenging staff to be their best means that ultimately the progress of the children is accelerated and they thrive as they will get the very best from the adults around them.
I value children’s ability to think critically and creatively and encourage them to be independent. I learn by doing and evaluating, so I try as often as possible to have the students I teach stay active in their learning. At NAISAK we encourage learning to develop through play, which as well as extending children’s fundamental knowledge base, also allows students to think for themselves, develop strategies for solving problems and learn through activities that engage and enthuse them.
I like to keep active and believe exercise and a healthy lifestyle are incredibly important. I enjoy running, particularly down long, shady country lanes, and play netball regularly in Doha during the winter time. Being Australian, swimming was firmly embedded in my childhood and I still enjoy getting into the water at any opportunity. My husband and I have recently signed up to compete in an IronMan 70.3 event in Bahrain. I am a little bit daunted by the mammoth effort that it is going to take to complete but excited by this once-in-a-lifetime challenge.
In addition to my sporting pursuits, I also have a passion for making things, particularly embroidery. I am enrolled on a flexible training course at the Royal School of Needlework at Hampton Court Palace in London and the first technique I have begun to learn about is Jacobean Crewel work. I hope to one day complete the Diploma course.
I enjoy speaking to parents about their children. It is always a pleasure to be able to let children’s families know what they are getting up to in class and how they are progressing in their learning. My door is always open and if parents wish to speak to me they can pop in. I can also be contacted by phone or email.