About Laurie

My students call me “Miss Laurie”.  I have been an elementary teacher since 1995, teaching students aged 4 to 18 in several countries including the United States, Canada, and France.  I am the creator of Giggle Facts and founder of Giggle Learn.

I have a Bachelor of Arts (Honors) degree in French from Trent University and a Bachelor of Education degree from Queen’s University.

I speak two languages, and I have taught in both English and French classrooms.  I have taught all grade levels K-6: Kindergarten, First Grade, Second Grade, Third Grade, Fourth Grade, Fifth Grade, and Sixth Grade.  I have evaluated learning resources for a publishing company and created curriculum for several school districts.  Currently, I offer 1-1 tutoring to pre-school, elementary, and middle-school students.  I am very devoted to kids, love teaching children, and enjoy developing individualized programs for each of my students.  I am a life-long teacher and learner.

My Teaching Philosophies

I have a few key principles that guide my overall philosophy of educating children.  These beliefs serve as a framework for everything I create, teach, and believe in regarding education as a whole.

Learning Should Be Fun!

I strongly believe that most concepts can be taught with games.  I constantly invent new games to teach concepts to kids, where the concepts have typically been taught in more traditional ways.  This makes the child’s learning much more fun and therefore more meaningful and engaging.  It is always great for parents and myself to see how the children who come to me for after school tutoring enjoy their time and have so much fun learning.

Child-Centered Learning

Education should be centered around the individual child.   Children absorb concepts, subjects, and material in many different ways and at different speeds.  A child’s learning style should be nurtured to ensure that his/her potential is unlocked.  Different approaches must be used in teaching different children since each child has individual learning styles and strengths.  It is my job as an educator to identify each child’s needs and learning strengths and then teach the child in a way that best suits them.

Build Confidence in Children

Self-confidence is an important factor in a child’s learning, and it serves as an important foundation for his/her future.  We teachers must constantly build this self-confidence in the children we teach as it is imperative to their success and to their sense of self-worth.  I create many opportunities for children to be successful by using creative approaches and positive reinforcement.  This engenders the love of learning.  A teacher’s support and positive attitude create a nurturing and safe learning environment for children.   I make sure to celebrate kids’ accomplishments, big and small!  They really thrive on the positive reinforcement!

Connect With Children

I make real connections with students.  This comes first and foremost by having sincere respect for them.  I earn their trust; I don’t just expect it.  Humor is a valuable tool that I often use to connect with my students.  Children have a great sense of humor and they love laughing, and so I make their learning fun, making it less serious and more interesting to them.  Frankly, I am certain that they often think we are just playing together, not knowing that I am actually teaching and guiding them.

When teaching more difficult concepts, it is imperative not to take things for granted, such as a child’s assumed prior knowledge.  I break down tough concepts into bite-sized pieces and teach the base vocabulary that helps students connect learning to their own lives.

Mental Math and Problem-Solving Skills

When teaching Math, I guide children with two main ideas in mind.  I want them to develop strong Mental Math skills and Problem-Solving skills.  Children are very capable of being critical thinkers when they are given the necessary tools and guidance.  I encourage them to use many strategies, allowing them to solve problems in a variety of ways.  I let them decide which strategies and methods best suit their way of thinking and learning. 

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