• Leonard Webb

Ethnic Gem: Kathleen (Kathy) Brown

Updated: Sep 11, 2019

School: David A. Ellis School

Roxbury, Massachusetts

By Samantha Williams, Managing Editor / Sr. Contributing Writer

If you were a teacher, what would be your favorite grade to teach? Ethnic Gem, Kathleen (Kathy) Brown, will always prefer to teach kindergarten!

Born and raised in Boston, Massachusetts, Kathy watched her sister, fellow Ethnic Gem, Theresa Brown, develop a love of teaching and knew teaching would also be her life’s work. Although Kathy has taught grades 1-4 literacy and grades 1-2 science, her passion was in teaching kindergarten. Kathy chuckled, “Kindergartners are known as the “REAL” people. They’ll tell you when they love you, and they’ll let you know when they don’t!” Kathy finds it rewarding to watch her students enter school with basic skills and then move on to 1st grade as readers, writers, architects, mathematicians, and scientists.

Exposing her students to various aspects of art and culture is important to Kathy. She once invited a couple from Boston Ballet to speak to her class, and they eagerly agreed and even taught the students ballet moves.

Kathy also makes sure her students are included in local initiatives, and one of their projects was showcased at City Hall! Unfortunately, the school didn’t have funding to bus the students to City Hall to see their exhibit. That’s when Kathy decided to contact Congressman Tito Jackson, who was happy to assist and provided bus transportation. Before leaving, the students toured City Hall Chambers, and one of her students sat in the seat State Representative Ayanna Pressley sat in as City Council Representative.

One important lesson Kathy has learned from teaching is that sometimes the educational system prevents children from truly tapping into their creativity. Although children enter the school system at their optimal cognitive and thinking potential - expressing interest in evaluating and creating, educators often focus on teaching and assessment. This significantly limits the creativity of children and forces them to do simple memorization.

When interacting with her students, Kathy makes it a point to show sincere and personal interest in her students and their families. Kathy goes beyond the classroom and develops meaningful relationships with her students, which include attending their recitals, visiting them at their homes, and connecting with their families.

Kathy is the quintessential kindergarten teacher, and her students absolutely love her! Kathy’s one wish for all of her students is that they become productive and kind members of society.

Kathleen is the kindergarten teacher all children wish for and we are proud to acknowledge her as an Ethnic GEM!

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