The classrooms at Parker are magical places. Every corner, wall, and whiteboard has motivational quotes and positive messages that encourage students to explore their curiosity and develop a love of learning. For Laurie Buttaro, Lower School Grade 2 teacher, inspiring her students to become independent explorers in their learning is her driving force.
Originally from the East Coast, Laurie has taught in schools all over the country from pre-kindergarten to Grade 6. In 2016, Laurie and her family settled in San Diego and she accepted a position as a Grade 2 teacher at Parker.
“Among all the grades I have taught, my favorites are Pre-K to second grade,” says Laurie. “In these grades, the students begin to go from learning how to read to reading for information and enjoyment.”
To feed her students’ curiosity, Laurie encourages her students to share and talk about books they’ve read or found interesting during circle time. If the book is a hit with the rest of the class, they can vote to have it added to the classroom’s sharing library—take a book, share a book—teaching students what you share can inspire others.
As a reading and writing specialist, Laurie believes reading is the spark to curiosity.
“I love teaching students to read so they can go on their own journeys through books and stories. Watching all my students become confident readers is the best thing.”
Laurie’s her favorite project for her students is the National Parks project where students partner with each other to learn and report to the class about the different national parks from around the country.
“I love teaching students to read so they can go on their own journeys through books and stories. Watching all my students become confident readers is the best thing.”Laurie Buttaro
“I love this project because of the research and collaboration skills my students learn,” says Laurie. “But what I love the most is how these projects inspire families to visit the National Parks. I love hearing about their trips when they return.”
Laurie says she hopes her students remember what inspired them in her classroom and that they continue to feed their curiosity with a lifelong journey of learning.
“My students teach me as much as I teach them each day,” says Laurie. “I hope my students never lose their excitement to learn new things, and I hope they share it with the world to make it a better place.”