Last week’s Wednesday Messages included an article about two of our former first grade teachers, Kimberley Warkentin and Holly Burns, who have returned to the school as parents. Another former first grade teacher, Laura White, is also back on campus, resuming her role as our chorus teacher after a year’s maternity leave.
Chorus is an after-school Explorations class. Seventy-one children—nearly half of all K–5 students—are in one of our three choruses, and Laura teaches them all: kindergarten and first grade, second and third grade, and fourth and fifth grade.
Laura enjoys sharing her passion for music with her students. “I want them to love singing and feel comfortable performing. We work a lot on matching pitches, blending our voices together, and being in control of our bodies to do dance moves as an ensemble.”
Laura has shared her musical gifts with the school in other ways too. She estimates that she’s been music director for 20 fifth grade plays and Drama Camp productions. She has also sung at many fifth grade graduations.
A Meher Schools graduate, Laura started teaching chorus the same year she began teaching in the classroom, 2012, and continued to do both until last year, when her son was born. She taught kindergarten initially and then first grade with Kim Polasek in Room 9.
“I’ve studied singing, dancing, and acting my whole life,” Laura says. She majored in musical theater at the University of Michigan. It was there that she fell in love with working with children and chose to pursue teaching rather than a career in the performing arts.
“Becoming a mom has made me appreciate the small moments of growth so much. Children are always changing, growing, and absorbing new understanding. It’s such a privilege to be part of each child’s special journey.”
Her son will embark on the next phase of his special journey next fall, when he starts at the White Pony. Will his mom return to the classroom? “We’ll see!”