Working at an alternative high school in Boston early in my career and hearing about the experiences of my students really opened my eyes to the importance of equity in education. They taught me that I didn’t always need to know what to say, but listening to them and allowing for their voices to be heard was what they needed and deserved. I learned to be myself, be present, and develop authentic relationships because students can sense if adults aren't being real.
Faculty and Staff Directory
At the heart of our community are the extraordinary people on our faculty and staff. We invite you to meet some of them in our Know Your Pelicans series.
As a counselor I am constantly learning how unique each students perspective is, no matter how common the issue. The more understanding I have about each student's outlook, the better I can help them along a path to success.
Whenever I'm asked about influential teachers, I think of my 5th Grade teacher Ms. Capuano. I remember my friends and I were having some classic 5th grade drama, and she kept us in from recess and made us sit in a circle and talk it out. It's the first time I can remember a teacher focusing solely on our emotions as kids––not because it was affecting us in the classroom, but because she truly cared how everyone was doing. I believe that in order for a kid to be successful in school, they need to feel supported emotionally, and she demonstrated how to do it!
I was born in Trinidad, and although I moved here when I was three years old, I grew up listening to soca music. Soca music is my happy place. When I am stressed or frustrated I can play soca and immediately smile. My mind becomes flooded with the best memories of dancing in the street during Trinidad Carnival, celebrating at my wedding, Saturday mornings with my family, and dancing with my beloved granny (who is no longer with us but knew how to move when soca was playing). As someone who has moved around quite a bit in life, soca has always provided me the comfort of home no matter how far away I am from my loved ones.
I love having the ability to make a teacher's work feel a little easier, whether it is connecting them with professional development, communicating with families, working with students, or sharing words of encouragement.
If I ever walk away from a class session not having learned something from my students, it's an indicator that something was missing from the lesson. That said, one of the main things I've learned from my students, particularly now, is that I don't need to hide behind a mask of perfection. When my students are tired, they tell me that they're tired. When they're confused, they say they're confused. If they're feeling great, they let me know. They don't mask emotions, and I find that incredibly admirable.
Girls come up to me and say they're happy that I, as a female, am their computer teacher. It's shown them that they can go into tech, too, even though it's still a male dominated field.
It's so rewarding when parents tell you about projects that their child has started at home that were inspired by something in the classroom.
Mathematics is a universal language and a powerful investigative tool, and it can be used to effect positive social change. It provides a very discerning lens through which we can inspect our world.
My latest obsession is Titus Kaphar, a young African American painter and sculptor who explores the power of representation in historical narratives. His work broadened my perspective on the need to amend, but not avoid, the retelling of difficult moments in history.
Literature gets to big questions of how you want to live your life, how literary characters can act as a litmus test for what it means to be a human in the world … Literature becomes an instructor's manual for how to live and how not to live.
Our students encourage me to be an activist instead of a bystander; to reimagine a cardboard box and old bottle caps as a robot; they show me shortcuts around the building when I find myself in a dead end (both literally and figuratively).
I hope to teach my students about collaboration and working as a team. Music is such a wonderful way to bring people together and create shared experiences.
I love that my colleagues and I all have the same mission: to help the Packer community through the use of technology.
It is such fun to work with students. I learn so much from them. They often come at issues with different ways of thinking from mine. I cherish this more and more as I grow older.
Our field trips enable us to connect with objects (and buildings) that have endured centuries and will outlast us. They bring the past to life and make it tangible.
I hope that through exploring characters from other times, lands, life experiences, etc. students will gain a visceral sense of understanding so that they can empathize with all people.
My colleagues are caring. Many of them care deeply, and I feel a kinship like nothing I’ve felt in the workplace before.
The fellowship among my colleagues not only helps elevate my own teaching, but also makes me feel like a part of the community.
On a regular basis I learn about the power of forgiveness from the students. Children can be deeply disappointed with someone but they can also be resilient and quickly remember why they love that person.
I want all my students to understand that it is okay to fail. I want them to be able to push through difficult problems and feel a huge sense of accomplishment and pride when they’re finished.
Every time I see students having conversations in the target language just because it's fun and useful, it is very rewarding to me, professionally and personally.
One of my favorite parts of the curriculum is helping kids to think about how to be good problem solvers. It’s hugely important to teach them how to start with a plan and work from there.
In both the intellectual and personal realms, I hope my students will continue to always ask themselves the questions we base our 6th Grade Core course on: Whose perspective am I hearing? Whose may be left out?
Many adults see math as cold and sterile and formulaic. I think a lot about how to help my students find the joy, beauty, and creativity in math.
I hope to teach students persistence, inventiveness, skepticism, that failures are part of the process, how to answer their own questions, learn from mistakes, and work together.
I don’t think that there are many schools where the students and parents know the members of the Operations Staff as well as they do at Packer. Those relationships are very rewarding.
Building a happy classroom community in which we can laugh, share our struggles, and enjoy each other’s successes is paramount.
My favorite thing about Packer is our diversity. People sense it when they enter the building. We encourage and respect each other for our differences as well as our similarities.
One of my favorite things to do at Packer is learn about the lives of all of our students. I love talking to them about things that are not related to school. We don't talk politics; we talk about everything else—and that fills me with energy.
My students never cease to amaze me — the way they look at a problem or find a solution in a way that I could never have anticipated. Their creativity drives me.
I hope my students come to appreciate the value of learning in a caring, supportive, and mutually challenging community.
I hope that our youngest scientists quickly learn that no matter their age or size, they can make a difference. The smallest things they do can lead to big changes.
The Middle School Science Fair is the most rewarding part of my job. Students can discover and follow a passion in science and take their learning as deep as they are willing to go.
As a college counselor, I feel incredibly lucky to get to know juniors and seniors individually. I am inspired by their willingness to take risks, their abundant positivity, and their ability to recognize how they have grown and changed.
I hope to teach my students that learning is lifelong and there really is value in trying to figure things out.
One of the most valuable lessons I hope to teach my students is that it’s okay to make mistakes. We all have things we’re really good at and things we need to work on.
Together with my wonderful parent volunteers, we encourage the many members of the community who love Packer to make a gift in support of our school.
I love teaching students how to conduct original research—whether in the Packer archives, for a documentary film, or their 10th Grade research paper.
I have spent the bulk of my professional life teaching and working at Packer. I started here as a young teacher and loved it so much I never left!
Choosing the right college is less about its reputation and much more about finding a place that will support you as you grow into the person you hope to become.
I hope to teach my students to be self learners. We are all students for life, and the more curious and engaged we are in the world, the more rewarding our lives will be.
The Independent Science Research Program is my favorite thing at Packer. I love seeing students go from having an interest in science to becoming so confident and knowledge about their research topic.
It is essential that we teach students to understand different perspectives. Reading is a great way to facilitate this because books can serve as mirrors and windows.
Some of the best times in math class happen when students have a “lightbulb” moment, and they exclaim, “Oh, now I get it!” It is very satisfying for them and me.
My colleagues are really talented educators, and my students are some of the finest kids I've ever worked with.
My colleagues truly embody the spirit of Packer’s Mission Statement and are some of the kindest, warmest, and smartest people I’ve ever worked with!
I love teaching all of my electives, but I think I like Cultural Anthropology the most. This is partly because it's my background, but I also enjoy seeing students respond to a new disciplinary approach to studying the world.
When I watch our student leaders take a topic and bring their ideas to it, and witness their readiness to explore challenging questions with others in our community, it brings me joy and appreciation for being an educator.
Knowing that my day will be filled with humor, no matter how hard the task may be, is very satisfying. I thank my colleagues for that.
One of the greatest things about working at Packer is the opportunity to learn from colleagues. The energy, the enthusiasm, and the dedication to be found across all disciplines and divisions are inspiring!
I take great pride when the kids that we accept into this community make a major impact, from presenting their findings from years of research in the Science Research Program to choreographing a piece in the Dance Concert.
It's always such a thrill when Dance Concert season comes along. Being able to work with the Upper School choreography class and help the dancers to bring their artistic visions to life is such a joy.
It is always rewarding when my students speak knowledgeably and passionately!
Students feel comfortable talking to me about anything. Sometimes I give them creative ideas for how to go about things. Once, an Upper School soccer player was having a hard time. She was worrying: "We're not going to win [our game], we're not going to win!" I encouraged her, and the team ended up winning!
My favorite thing about Packer is the way that students from different divisions engage with each other. I love that they have the opportunity to do so through activities that facilitate reaching outside their normal circles of interaction.
Packer is a place where I can help students do anything from researching why the Mayan empire collapsed to hanging drywall in a Baltimore Habit for Humanity site.
I most enjoy the times when students are engaged in design work in my classroom, such as developing experiments to explore force. It is rewarding and inspiring to see students take creative control and think of new and interesting solutions.
The relationships that I've made with both my colleagues and my students are the most memorable. Having space and time to create and collaborate with one another allows you to see each other through a different lens.
My favorite things about Packer are our vibrant community and our commitment to diversity.
My favorite moments are the times my students take charge of the class and have insightful discussions about a topic or problem, while I observe their discourse from the sidelines.
I am always in awe of what our students bring to class discussions on topics such as identity, literacy, math, social studies, our classroom community, and beyond—I am always learning from them!
My favorite thing about Packer is the friendly interactions among the faculty, staff, students, and parents. I have a unique perspective of the school from the front desk.
One of my favorite things about Packer is the myriad of simply lovely and interesting people with whom I have had more than passing relationships: students, faculty, staff, and parents alike.
I love our caring community, our wonderful students, the friends I have made, and the way I have grown as a person here.
I am in awe of our students. Their energy, motivation, and sense of agency are an inspiration to me as both a teacher and a life-long learner.
My favorite thing about Packer is the people. And the amazing courses students follow. Oh... and the garden area at the back.
My favorite thing is being around the kids and my coworkers. The atmosphere and the environment at Packer — it's just nice.
My favorite thing about Packer is that it supports teacher professional growth, creates space for community members to discuss important social issues, and encourages students and faculty to challenge themselves.
I love the cycle of each school year, and it never bores me. Students and teachers start in September as relative strangers, getting to know one another as we begin working together.
I think I am always striving to create experiences for our Middle Schoolers that I wish I'd had as a kid — and I love that many of my students and colleagues at Packer are up for the adventure.
I love that every day as I walk through the halls of Packer, I exchange greetings with students, faculty, and staff. It is a wonderfully welcoming and affirming feeling to be seen and acknowledged with warmth, and often, with enthusiasm.
There's something incredibly satisfying about watching a student who has been struggling with a problem and seeing the moment that they get it to work.
Through the years, my favorite thing about Packer has been the students that I have had the privilege to coach. Whether on a soccer field or a basketball court, our student athletes conduct themselves with class and a remarkable work ethic.
I love the fact that individuality is embraced at Packer. I would be hard pressed to describe the typical Packer student (or teacher, for that matter) because everyone is encouraged to be themselves.
The relationships with fellow teachers, staff, parents, and children that we at Packer encounter every year are monumental, and extend beyond the classroom.
My favorite thing about Packer is the enthusiasm and creativity of the students. I am inspired by their willingness to test the boundaries of their own ideas and their readiness to explore new possibilities.
My favorite thing about Packer is the diversity in the faculty and student body. Packer offers a wealth of opportunities for students to explore a variety of languages and cultures.
Last year, a group of Middle School students led our Kindergartners in an art project and discussion about identity. The confidence, patience and tenderness with which the Middle School students led the activity reaffirmed for me why it's so fantastic to be a member of this community.