This week we catch up with Miss Kristen Hankins, Year 3 Teacher at Narre Warren South Campus.
What do you teach at Heritage College?
I’m wearing two ‘hats’ at Heritage College. I am the Learning and Teaching Coordinator and I also teach in Year 3 at Narre Warren South on Thursdays and Fridays.
Why did you choose teaching as a career?
I have a passion for learning and love to see students share in the joy and excitement that comes with discovering new knowledge and skills. Teaching is an incredibly powerful opportunity to not only foster students’ skills for their involvement in the society but also share Jesus with them too.
Tell us a little about your background in teaching.
This is my ninth year in the classroom… they go past so quickly! I’ve only worked at one school previously – Northpine Christian College up in Brisbane. After graduating, I started out teaching in Year 1 and spent three years there, before shifting to Year 6 where I taught for five years. In the last few years, I have taken on a Junior Coordinator role at my previous school. I loved having a combination of time in the classroom, as well as time supporting other teachers to make education even better.
What is your biggest challenge in the classroom?
Time management is always a challenge – there are so many things I want to do with students and only a limited number of hours in the school day!
What book are you reading/recently read, or what would we find on your podcast list?
I love to read about how people learn – a few of my favourites that I’ve read in the last little while are ‘Grit’ by Angela Duckworth, ‘Natural Born Learners’ by Alex Beard and ‘Mindset’ by Carol Dweck. On a lighter note, I’ve also been listening to the Ranger’s Apprentice series by John Flanagan as I drive to and from work. They look like science-fiction which is not usually my genre of choice, but I have been very pleasantly surprised!
Who inspires you and why?
God has had a huge impact on my teaching journey and a comment that a friend made to me in my first year of teaching has become my daily prayer; ‘When they look at me, may they see you, Jesus, only you’. This prayer keeps me humble when I feel success and gives me strength when I feel inadequate.
What is the most rewarding thing about being a teacher?
This is such an easy question – the joy of seeing students happy and actively involved in their learning!
When you’re not teaching, what do you do in your downtime?
I like to bake and go jogging, and I’ve recently discovered I quite enjoy growing things! I don’t have a garden of my own so this new hobby is contained in the pots on my balcony.