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Kassia Omohundro Wedekind
Kassia Omohundro Wedekind is a math coach at Bailey's Elementary School for the Arts and Sciences right outside of Washington, DC. "I am someone who likes a lot of change in my teaching life," admits Kassia. The road to Bailey's took her to central Virginia, where she taught English for Migrant Education in migrant camps. "I learned a lot about teaching, immigration and migration issues, and apple and peach orchards," she says.
Kassia then decided that she wanted to work with children, so she taught ESOL in a couple of different schools before teaching second and third grade at Bailey's. After several years at Bailey's as a classroom teacher she became a math coach and works mostly with teachers and students in kindergarten and second grade.
"I love the creation of a community that comes with teaching," Kassia says. "You start out the year with your class as strangers and have the opportunity to build a powerful community of readers, writers, mathematicians, scientists, and world-changers. There are those wonderful moments in teaching where you step back for a moment and look around your classroom and say, 'These kids are doing the work of mathematicians.' These are the times that make all the hard parts of teaching worth it."
Kassia says that she is a constant reader of professional development books. She joined a professional development group when she arrived at Bailey's and they would meet monthly to talk about their reading, math, and how they applied what they've read to their teaching. "Being in a group like this made me wonder, question, and revise my ideas on teaching math. Having professional development based on great reading and with thoughtful colleagues enriches my teaching life tremendously."
Kassia received her bachelor's degree in Spanish and Latin American Studies from the University of Virginia. She believes in having both a full and happy work life and outside-of-work life. When she is not in the classroom she enjoys Saturday trips to the farmer's market with her husband, Aron, eating lots of sushi, taking summer trips to Cape Cod to see her dad, and going on trips with family and friends.