Lower School

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Paige Burton

Faculty Information
Location(s) Lower School
Title(s) Lower School Grade 4
Contact Information
School Email
  (Primary)
School Phone
(828) 274-0758   x384
Education
Degree(s) B.A., University of South Carolina
Other Information
2000 
 
Paige Burton is a fourth grade teacher in the Lower School and she has worked at Carolina Day School since 2000. Her daughter, Lea, attended CDS Pre-K through eighth grade, and Woods attended Pre-K through seventh grade. Mrs. Burton believes that “Everything you have done impacts who you are as a teacher, from waiting tables and backpacking through Europe, to working in Asheville City Schools as a reading tutor.” She received the Golden Apple aware in 2012.
 
Get to know Paige Burton:
 
In what ways can you teach/engage children at CDS that you couldn't at other schools? At CDS, we do not have to fit into a mold or teach to a test that is made by the state. Because of this, we teach what we know is both important and engaging, and we teach it in a way that encourages our students to question, to stretch themselves, and to grow so they are ready for the next endeavor.”
 
What do you like most about your job at CDS? “The people, of course! I consider myself to be one of the lucky people in the world who loves what they do, and where they do it. I not only enjoy the people I work with, but I also enjoy the parents, and especially the children.”
 
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? “In the Lower School students feel very safe in their classrooms, and with this feeling of safety comes the ability to make mistakes without fear of condemnation. Students encourage each other to try, and then try again. In my classroom I have a saying on my board, “ Mistakes are wonderful opportunities to learn.” and we live by that each day. Also, when we don’t know something we either look it up right then, and yes I have been known to stop to do a Google search right in the middle of class because “inquiring minds want to know!” or we have someone look it up later and report back to us. One year my class had so many questions about our science unit on Land and Water that weren’t answered through our experiments, and the class wanted to find out the answers. So, each student took two questions, found the answers, and they made an illustrated question and answer book that is now bound and in our library to check out.”
 
How would you describe your classroom? “I would describe my classroom as fantastic, fun, safe, and inclusive.  I encourage students to help one another on most tasks by guiding them to the answers, not just telling them. I would also say that my classroom is a community of learners that support, encourage, and trust one another.”
 
What books and authors inspire you? “I don’t have one particular author or work that inspires. I am a constant reader and seeker of knowledge, and I try to gain something from all of it - be it an educational article, juvenile book, or novel.
 
What is your favorite quote about education, mentorship, children, and/or learning?  "Unless you try to do something beyond what you have already mastered, you will never grow." - Ronald E. Osborn
 
How would you describe yourself and/or your approach to your job in 10 words or less?  “Make a connection, set high expectations, push them to excel.”
 
Which classroom projects/events are you known for? “The Middle Ages Faire which we hold each December as a culminating activity for our unit. We have held this faire three times and we have students dress in costume, parents bring authentic Middle Ages dishes based on a website of recipes we share with them, and we play games from the time period. The faire ends with the famous catapult contest where the students compete with the catapults they have designed and built themselves. This activity is a celebration of the hard work they have done on the creation of a website, a research paper about the Middle Ages, and weeks of teamwork on their catapults. Students are pushed to learn about themselves as learners, team players, designers, builders, and researchers. It is a great experience.”
 
What personal passion brings balance to your life?I love to read, play games, and run, but being outside is what truly feeds my soul.”
 
Is there anything else we should know about you and your work? “I LOVE IT! I am invigorated by working on curriculum and consistently reflecting on ways to improve my teaching. I am intentional in how and what I teach, but by far the most important part of teaching is the relationship you form with your students. When there is mutual trust and respect, the real learning begins to happen.”
 
How is CDS different from what you experienced as a child in school? “I think the biggest difference I see is the relationships that form between the students and the teachers, as well as the teachers and the families. Because of this relationship, we all care for each other and in turn we are there to help, to focus, to challenge, and to guide each other on this part of the journey.”
 

 

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