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Q&A with Erica Patz of Sir Manasseh Meyer International School

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Find out why Erica Patz loves teaching at Sir Manasseh Meyer International School!

Teacher: Erica Patz
Teaches: Formerly Grade 2, Teaching Grade 3 in 2016-2017

What is your background and training?
I grew up in Japan, and attended an international school in Tokyo. Together with my multi-cultural international background, this helps me to better understand and assist the students that I teach. Having studied in California, I began my teaching career in the international school sector, specialising in early childhood and elementary school levels. I’ve lived in Singapore for two years.

What made you want to become a teacher?
At a young age, my kindergarten teacher inspired me to be a teacher. As I grew older, my interest in global issues and helping others grew as well. When deciding on a career path, I realized that as a teacher, I could impact the lives of my students to become responsible and caring global citizens — allowing me to positively utilise my interests.

What do you love about working at your school in particular?
SMM International School has a very unique research-based curriculum that helps shape creative thinkers and risk takers. This means as a teacher, I am there to facilitate their learning, rather than provide information for them to memorize. Classes are conducted in a Socratic way so students are actively be involved in their learning as they reach an answer. I enjoy facilitating the students to drive their own learning by enthusiastically sharing their thoughts and ideas.

What is your favourite game or activity to do with your students?
As our school follows the Singaporean math system (My Pals Are Here), this is when Grade 2 begins learning the multiplication table for the very first time.  As this is a very important segment in math, I integrate a game I came up with called “Kaboom” with multiplication. The students each pick a stick with a multiplication on it and if they answer correctly using a full sentence, they get to keep the stick. However, the student who draws the stick with “Kaboom” on it will have to forfit their sticks. I play this game with my students in the beginning of our math lesson to reinforce the multiplication table in a fun way.

What are some of your hobbies outside of school?
I enjoy gardening and am attempting to grow my own vegetables. Currently, I am growing basil, cherry tomatoes and mint. I also enjoy exploring and learning about different cultures. Singapore is a great place to do this because of the integrated multicultural society.

What is one fun fact about you?
I have two different names. My American name is Erica Patz and my Japanese name is Erika Kawaguchi.

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