Tammy D'Agostino - Fourth Grade Teacher
My name is Tammy D’Agostino and I am excited to be teaching 4th grade this year after returning from maternity leave. I arrived in Kensington the summer of 2002 where I was hired to teach 3rd grade. Although this will be my first year teaching 4th grade at KES, it is not new to me. I had previously taught 4th grade in Hadley, MA and Littleton, MA before coming to Kensington.
I was raised in Massachusetts, the oldest of three girls. I attended the University of Massachusetts at Amherst where I earned my undergraduate degree in Elementary Education and Sociology. I received my Masters degree from Lesley University in 2004.
I moved to NH after meeting my husband of 7 years. We have three wonderful children who I’ve been lucky enough to spend so much time with in their early years. My oldest is starting Kindergarten this year, my middle is starting preschool and my youngest is 18 months old and trying her hardest to keep up with her older siblings. We have 2 German Shorthaired Pointers who, in my opinion, are more mischievous than my children and require even more discipline!
I love being a part of the Kensington Staff. They are dedicated, bright, resourceful, and supportive people, and it is a privilege to work with them on a daily basis. I am also fortunate that KES fosters such a supportive and involved community of parents. They are such an important part of a successful school, classroom, and student.
Amy Danisus - Literacy Specialist
My name is Amy Danusis and I am so thrilled to begin my third year at Kensington Elementary School as the Literacy Specialist. I grew up in Florida and spent most of my free time finding a great spot on the beach where I could lose myself in a good book. I moved to New Hampshire five years ago with my husband of thirteen years, Chad. We live in Newmarket with our dog, Sheba, and two finicky cats, Mittens and Sabrina. I am still acclimating to the cold winters, but am finding that I really love the change of seasons here in New England. My husband and I like to take long walks with our dog, spend the summers on our boat in the lake, and travel whenever we can.
I received my Master's Degree in Elementary Education with a concentration in reading from the University of South Florida. While in Florida, I taught third grade for two years and first grade for four years. When I moved to New Hampshire, I decided to pursue my goal of becoming a Reading Specialist and have been working as a Literacy Specialist in SAU 16 for the last four years. All in all, I have been teaching for eleven years.
The role of a Literacy Specialist is a unique one. I'm able to support both students and staff on a daily basis. I provide small group instruction in reading and writing in collaboration with the classroom teacher. I also encourage and support development and implementation of the instructional literacy goals as related to the curriculum. I meet weekly with grade levels in a Professional Learning Community model. We develop lessons, share strategies, and identify student needs. My ultimate goal is to act as a resource for all things literacy!
Christine Burns - First Grade Teaching AssistantTo be done
Annie Beauchemin - Art Teacher
My name is Annie Beauchemin. I look forward to every day of teaching and experiencing art and expression through hands and heart! I have loved art since I was a young child. In school that was a good thing since I was interested, but average in music, and interested, but not at all talented in athletics! I didn't even feel very accomplished in drawing until I was in high school, but I have always enjoyed playing around with lots of art and crafting materials.
My formal schooling in Art Education K-12 occurred during my years at Penn State University. I also attended a year at Butera School of Art in Boston studying illustrating and commercial art. I have taught art to elementary school children for fifteen years in Bucksport, Me., So. Portland, Me., and Kensington, NH.
Before my three children were born, I sold my pencil and watercolor artwork and taught art classes in A Wink and a Dream art shop located next to the footbridge in Perkins Cove, Ogunguit, Me. While my children were young, I taught preschool and after school art classes in my home for eight years, and was a Kindergarten aide for a year. I have also done commercial art work for ski resorts, hotels and the Chamber of Commerce in No. Conway, NH. When not involved in art, I enjoy talking with all types of people, reading and movies about people, history, taking walks, gardening, and involvement with church activities. My husband keeps me moving in other ways...skiing, kayaking, sailing and biking.
I love to use my artwork to make others happy. I try to pass that love on through encouraging students to give their artwork to people they know, and people that need care. In class, a few times a year, we work hard on gifts for our family members. The Heart of Art Club which meets bimonthly on Tuesday afternoons at KES, is founded on the love of expression, and the love of giving art expression to others.
As the KES Art Teacher, I want to expose our students to many different forms of art, mediums, cultures, and styles of famous artists. Students need lots of time with discovery through hands-on learning. Art is a natural facilitator for hands on discovery. Ideally, I like to introduce a new concept, artist, style, or medium in the first ten minutes of class, so that the students can use the remainder of the period to learn and discover using their minds and hands. If I talk too long, the students often remind me that they want to get their hands into the materials!
Students love it when their art is displayed. It does not matter if it is displayed on a refrigerator, school display board, or framed on a wall. It is important that the art expression is appreciated, just as the artist is appreciated. We are all developing artists, on a journey finding out more about ourselves, and the materials of expression. Each piece of artwork is a small window into your child's mind. Enjoy the viewing!
Lili Spinosa - Physical Education Teacher
I am thrilled to be the physical education teacher at KES. I love my job! I grew up in many different states, living in Pennsylvania, upstate New York, southern California, Indiana and New Hampshire. I graduated from Purdue University in 1980. Upon graduating, I taught at two elementary schools outside of Indianapolis, Indiana while working on my Masters Degree. I received my Masters Degree from Indiana University in 1984. Then, after moving to New Hampshire in 1986, I began teaching at Newmarket Elementary School. In the year 2000, I was fortunate enough to begin my teaching career at KES.
I can honestly say I knew I wanted to work with children and sports since I was in 4th grade. That was pretty amazing, because I attended a school that had no physical education program! I never knew there was such a thing as a physical education teacher. I did grow up with three older brothers and that is where I received most of my sports education. During that time, girls did not have many options when it came to sports! Given the choice of joining a swim team or gymnastics team (my only two options), I chose swimming and continued to swim on swim teams. I ended my swimming career on the Purdue University Women's Swim Team. I enjoy being involved in many family activities with my husband and two children.
For years, the focus for Physical Education was on sports, games, and encouraging the "athletes" to do well and continue in sports. This focus left the great majority of students behind. Physical Education has changed throughout the years. We live in a time when children ride in cars to most activities, spend much time indoors (due to weather, for safety, or for use of games), and are involved in "organized" sports instead of outside "play". Physical education classes must fill the gap left by our changing society and we must reach all children. Activity and exercise is a lifelong skill that must be taught and encouraged throughout a child's educational experience, and PE is the class that teaches these skills. Through the use of sports, games, dance, and different activities, students will learn to love to move, and this appreciation for movement will allow them to become physically active adults. Hence, the goal of the KES physical education program is to become a healthy active adult. Physical Education classes must also address the issues of health and nutrition. Students should have an understanding of food, its nutritional values, and choices. They will be faced with challenges and need the knowledge to make good health choices. Knowledge is power...
Here at KES we offer different active opportunities outside the PE class for children who chose to move. We have morning exercise clubs which are all about moving- what a great way to start a day of learning! Our options have included: jump rope, yoga, dodgeball, walking/running, Dance Dance Revolution, and hopefully will have more options as time goes on.
It is awesome and exciting...remember "Education is Physical"!