Faculty & Staff (A-Z)

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Patty Baer

Faculty Information
Location(s) Lower School
Title(s) Grade 2 Assistant
Other Information
Patricia Baer spent 12 years in Pre-K in the Lower School; six as an assistant and six as a teacher, and she is transitioning to second grade as an assistant. She has been at Carolina Day School since 2002. Mrs. Baer’s daughter, Hayley, is a graduate of the CDS class of 2012 and her daughter, Peyton, will graduate in 2015. Mrs. Baer graduated from Western Carolina University and she is trained in Orton-Gillingham, she has completed the Key Learning Center Multisensory Structured Language Classroom Educator Training, and she completed Mona Brookes curriculum of Drawing through the Alphabet. She is also a director of the Lower School Musical.
Get to know Patricia Baer:
In what ways can you teach/engage children at CDS that you couldn't at other schools? Our low student to teacher ratio and supportive and qualified teaching assistants allow me the opportunity to engage with students on a one-on-one basis. I am able to present interactive lesson plans that allow the children to learn and create solutions for themselves. There is more opportunity for participation and differentiation for the individual child.”
What do you like most about your job at CDS? I enjoy the students, their parents, and my colleagues. Our students, even at the age of four, have a thirst for knowledge that I yearn to nurture and fill. Being in partnership with parents offers me the ability to work collaboratively towards what is in the best interest of their child. My colleagues are supportive and continuously encourage personal growth.”
In your opinion, how does the CDS community inspire students to be courageous and curious, wonder about things that they don’t understand, try new things, and develop individual passions? We encourage children to think!  Lead by example!  Be brave!  Try new things and think outside of the box! Ask questions and don’t be afraid to fail!  Be a problem solver! My job is not to tell a child how, what or why something happens, but to guide them into a world of self- exploration.”
What books and authors inspire you? Why Gender Matters, by Leonard Sax and Last Child in the Woods, by Richard Louv.
- Why Gender Matters details the importance of recognizing the differences between boys and girls as learners.  They think differently, learn differently, and interpret things differently.  If not careful, our teaching environment can limit their learning.
- Last Child in the Woods explains the phenomenon of “nature-deficit disorder” and its’ effect on children, adults, and society.  Direct exposure to nature is necessary for childhood development.”
What is your favorite quote about education, mentorship, children, and/or learning? “Education is not the filling of a pail, but the lighting of a fire.” - William Butler Yeats
How would you describe yourself and/or your approach to your job in 10 words or less?  “Instills a passion of lifetime learning through creativity and exploration.”
Which classroom projects/events are you known for? The Exploration Station encourages self-directed play. A child dons a lab coat, observes an item under a microscope, and then draws what he or she sees. I am able to ask open-ended questions...”What did you see?”  “Why did you draw it that way?” “Why do you think it looks that way” “What does it do?”
- The “Vocabulary Wall” introduces children to words and their meanings. During our readings, I often select a word that may be unfamiliar to the children. We brainstorm about what we think the word means, finally coming to a definition. As we move through the year, the children begin to find the words themselves, often excitedly raising their hands and identifying a word as one that they don’t recognize and want to know the meaning of. “Vocabulary words are everywhere!”   
What personal passion brings balance to your life? I am a huge Josh Groban fan. We listen to his music in our classroom, and the children are introduced to the beautiful languages of Italian, Spanish, French, and Portuguese. Every year we create something special...a book, a quilt, a card, and send it to the orphanage in South Africa that his foundation supports.  It is just one of the many ways we “do unto others.” I also enjoy gardening, and needlework such as knitting and traditional rug hooking.”  
Is there anything else we should know about you and your work? “I am an energetic and spontaneous person. When I see something exciting happening in my classroom, whether part of the curriculum or not, I go with it! One of my favorite activities is dressing up as Dr. Discovery, my “cousin” from Australia. Dr. Discovery visits our classroom often unannounced, and conducts messy and exciting experiments! She has thrown eggs, made it rain in the classroom, and taught the children about the water cycle through song and motion. She takes children into the woods to look for honey, introduces them to different foods through taste tests, and makes the best paper airplanes! She also carries rubber snakes and frogs in her backpack...but shh...don’t tell!  Mrs. Baer is terrified of frogs!”
How is CDS different from what you experienced as a child in school? “At Carolina Day School we see each child as a unique individual.  Not everyone learns the same way. Having the ability to differentiate and modify my lesson plans toward the needs of a specific child is important. Being able to reach a child at their level is valuable in creating a life long learner.”
Contact Information
School Email
School Phone
(828) 274-0758
Degree(s) B.S., Western Carolina University
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