Hello! My name is Erica Kirsch and I am a personalized learning support (PLS) teacher here at Spero Academy. I have been working with individuals with special needs since 2006 and have worked in education for the last 6 years. Before coming to Spero Academy, I taught in a DCD classroom setting (developmental and cognitive disabilities) at Minneapolis Public Schools and I have in been an ASR teacher (academic support room) at Spero Academy for the last 4 years. This will be my first year as the PLS 6 teacher and I am excited to get to my new students and their families. I graduated with my bachelor's degree in Studio Art from Augsburg University in 2010 where I received my teaching license in Visual Arts Education. In 2015, I completed my Master's of Arts in Education and special education license in Academic and Behavior Strategy.
My goal this year is to provide students with authentic, hands-on learning experiences in order to promote social and academic growth. We will focus on creating opportunities for students to build on their strengths and incorporate student interests into our learning. I am committed to a whole-child approach to learning and I truly value the unique qualities and energy that each student brings to our classroom. I strive to create an environment where students feel a sense of community and belonging and encourage students to take risks, make mistakes, and be themselves.
In our classroom, students will engage with high-quality books and will have opportunities to practice reading and writing for a variety of purposes. I hope to help foster a love of reading and appreciation for great books for all of our students. We will utilize the four blocks literacy curriculum which focuses on all aspects of literacy from fluency and comprehension, to sight word knowledge and phonemic awareness. In math, we will focus on building on students’ strengths in the areas of number sense and problem-solving skills while using math in ways that are functional and applicable in real life.
I live in South Minneapolis with my husband Adam and our cat Maki. My husband and I love to travel and get outdoors. This year we will take our 11th annual Boundary Waters canoe camping trip. In my free time, I enjoy reading, biking, gardening, and cooking.
I love working at Spero Academy and have been blessed to have worked with so many caring and supportive family members throughout my time here! Please know that I always love hearing from parents and families and I am dedicated to working together as a team in order to support your child’s growth and success.