I’m Amanda Siepiola, and this year marks my first at Austin Discovery School. I taught kindergarten, first grade, second grade, and fifth grade at Horace Mann Elementary School in Washington, DC during my twelve years there. I’m originally from a small town in upstate New York. I stayed in my hometown to attend Hamilton College, where I studied history. During the following years, I spent a year as an AmeriCorps volunteer in Boston with an organization called City Year, a year teaching in Little Rock, Arkansas, and then spent a second year as an AmeriCorps volunteer with AmeriCorps VISTA, starting a service-learning program back at Hamilton College called Project SHINE, in which college students tutored refugees and immigrants. I then earned my Masters in Teaching at American University.
Several years ago, I traveled to Finland through a Fulbright grant for teachers to explore constructivist teaching methods and using elements of play in the classroom. You may check out some of my learning and thinking from that trip on my blog: http://constructivistteacher.
When I'm not at school, I love to be out in nature--hiking with my French Bulldog named Salmiakki or spending time in any body of water I can find. I'm also an avid reader, Tyson's Tacos-lover, huge Bruce Springsteen fan, and, being fairly new to Austin, an explorer of Central Texas.