What Colleagues Say

All of the following anecdotes were taken with permission of my former colleagues. (Contact information is available upon request.) I am humbled and honored to read their thoughts about my classroom.

Jillian is an extremely creative  and inspired  teacher. She collaborates well with her colleagues, offers ideas, shares her IT skills and supports others readily. She designs activities that  are engaging, challenging, significant and relevant. She assesses students in an authentic  and transparent manner. Her  preparation for teaching, the amount of time  she  devotes and her organisational skills are outstanding…She enjoys participating  in all curricular and  educational issues and contributes to her teaching team through her creativity, efficiency  and  proactive nature. Jillian’s teaching environment  is a pleasure to  visit. The students are actively engaged and have a clear idea of expectations as well as the opportunity for open ended, differentiated tasks…Jillian has good relations with all, is gentle and  kind and takes time to listen to others. She makes others feel valued and worthwhile.

-Linda Koseoglu, former colleague, 5th Grade Teacher, SEV Uskudar Elementary

Jill is friendly, knowledgeable, and a very hard worker. She always handles herself with composure. She has wonderful relationships with her students. They work hard for her and they are motivated to meet her expectations. I think of Jill as my mentor.

-Kayla Swanton, colleague, 5th Grade Teacher, SEV Uskudar Elementary

Jillian is an organized and creative teacher. Her classroom reflects who she is, and the passion she has for life and teaching. Every time I walked in I was taken aback by the large photo collage over her desk, the bright and inviting colors, Jillian’s friendly handwriting everywhere, and the wonderful activities all around. Her room was a cheerful and thoughtfully designed space. It was also impeccably organized. Jillian spent many hours before and after school and on the weekends preparing her room and plans. She meticulously graded student papers and kept grades that allowed everyone to understand the students’ progress. She had many challenging situations in the Welcome Room such as students with very little education entering the primary grades, and students who spoke tribal languages that almost no one else in Phoenix spoke. She rose to every occasion and made the students feel welcome. They enjoyed being in her classroom. Students began to speak English quickly in her room. They wanted to join in the fun and to respond to Ms. McSweeney!

-Caroline Yeryomenko, former colleague, 7th-8th Grade Welcome Room, Montebello School

I have been lucky to witness the magic of Jill’s classroom! It doesn’t matter the size, shape, location of the class, or the diversity amongst her students, she can transform any classroom into one of respect and compassion. She builds a classroom culture of creativity and curiosity, that gives an overwhelming desire to learn and achieve more. She has a unique ability to tap into what makes each student “tick” in her classroom. All students are engaged in her lesson because of the genuine investment she makes to each and every student.

-Dinae Geer, former colleague, 5th Grade Teacher, Montebello School