What approaches to teaching and learning best enable us to reach and teach all learners? In large group in-service, seminars and classrooms, Faye models and teaches:
- quality reading and writing instruction
- assessment for learning and performance-based assessment
- open-ended teaching and learning strategies
- inclusion of all learners
- collaboration, co-planning and co-teaching
- literature, poetry and information circles
- gradual release of responsibility
Faye believes that all educators must be leaders of learning – classroom teachers, specialist teachers, administrators, district staff. She believes that it is our common goal to work together to support the best learning possible for all learners.
Faye began teaching at Walter Whyte School in Grand Marais, Manitoba, at a time when the focus of the school was to individualize and un-grade. She continued to teach in elementary and secondary schools in the public system until June, 2010 when she retired from her part time resource position at RJ Tait Elementary in Richmond. Over this period, she was fortunate to hold a variety of positions including:
- Reading Clinician in Lord Selkirk School Division, Manitoba
- Founding co-teacher of the Diagnostic Prescriptive Centre for students with significant learning challenges in Richmond School District, British Columbia
- Curriculum Coordinator for Gifted and Enriched Education in Richmond School District
- Keynote presenter for the University of British Columbia in the Principles of Teaching Course
- Sessional instructor in Literacy Assessment and Instruction for Simon Fraser University Field Programs, British Columbia.
One of Faye’s most rewarding experiences was her time in Latvia as a member of the Reading and Writing for Critical Thinking Project (sponsored by the International Reading Association) and her continued work spanning 15 years with the Latvian educational community, mostly recently the Think Differently in Math and Science Project and a video for the conference celebrating Development Schools as Community Resource Centres.
In recent years, Faye enjoyed working with the EARCOS consortium and educators in international schools in Asia, exploring learning in that context. Working with the team at Concordia International Middle School, Shanghai, was a special delight.
In July,2016, Faye was a member of a BC Educators ‘Me to We’ Volunteer group in Kenya. Her heart soared from this memorable experience! In 2017 and 2019 she created and led 2 groups of volunteer educators who worked side-by-side with educators in the Maasai Mara, sharing practice and learning from each other. Each day these professional development sessions with the teachers and the learners were humbling, enriching, and life-changing for all involved.
Faye’s BC work has focused on multi-year, multi-district projects with an emphasis on mentoring and coaching new teacher leaders and opening classrooms. The first was a provincial initiative sponsored by the BC Superintendents Association and the BC Principals and Vice Principals Association. Working with a team of teacher leaders from K-12, including classroom teachers, administrators, specialists and district staff, Faye and her team presented quality teaching and assessment for learning workshops in five regions throughout the province. Each of the three years saw more than 1000 participants in this two-day series. The teacher leaders received extra days of leadership coaching and team building from Faye, and then were encouraged to assume more leadership in learning in their home districts.
This highly successful initiative was replicated in several districts, including Coquitlam and attended by Burnaby in a three-day series. Over the course of 5 years, this initiative grew to include more intense learning options, including classroom co-teaching and small group learning teams wherein teachers chose a personal research question and met 7 half days over the course of a year, with a facilitator and a team, to pursue their inquiry in a collaborative framework.
The Bulkley Valley District also had a four-year teacher leadership initiative culminating in teams of teachers opening their classroom doors to observation teams. These K-12 teachers co-planned, co-taught and led reflective discussions following their lessons. The energy and expertise in these classrooms was outstanding.
Faye was awarded the Medal of Distinction, 2015 by the Fort la Bosse School Division, for her contributions to education.