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Junior high teachers take on HHS

Sep 14, 2017


Ellie Fishman

Mr. Aaron Ditty, Science, teaches a lesson about position, velocity, and acceleration in his fourth block Physics class.

As sophomores walk through the halls of HHS, they might notice some familiar faces of their classmates, but also some of their former teachers.

Four teachers from North and West Junior Highs have joined the HHS staff this year.

Mr. Aaron Ditty, science, came from West Junior High. With degrees in mechanical engineering and education, Ditty first worked as an engineer before switching his career for teaching because he had a passion for teaching students about science. Ditty said he is excited about teaching a more advanced level of science.

“There’s a lot more math [in high school physics] and it’s more complex,” Ditty said.

Ms. Angie Brueske, Language Arts, came from North Junior High. She has taught since 2000 and has taught in the Hopkins district since 2004. She said she’s excited because she believes students at HHS are more capable than at the junior high level.

The two other teachers that came from WJH were Mr. Vaughn Kardashian, Technology Education, and Ms. Kristy Nordeen, Language Arts. Besides teaching a full schedule, Kardashian also is a department chair, coach, and curriculum writer. Nordeen has also come to HHS from WJH after teaching in the Hopkins district for only one year.

While the new high school teachers have had to adjust to teaching high school students and material, they are excited to take on the endeavor of teaching high schoolers.

“I feel energized. I get to re-experience being a new teacher. I get to teach new material and meet new student without being very anxious,” Brueske said.

Transitioning from the junior high to HHS also has been a learning curve for these new teachers, with such a big transition from junior high to HHS that has made it somewhat challenging.

“The demands [of teaching at a high school level] require me to look more closely. I need to figure out higher level questions,” Brueske said.

All of the new high school teachers are excited to motivate, inspire, and lead high school-age students. Brueske said she is excited to work with new students because they are more mature than junior high students. Ditty noticed this positive difference as well.

“[The] students are very different. They are more mature and [teachers] are able to have a more mature relationship,” Ditty said.

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