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Upper Elementary & Middle School Teachers

Grade 3 Teaching Team

Elizabeth McIntosh

Grade 3 School Teacher, BA, DipEd

Elizabeth McIntosh

Elizabeth is an experienced international educator in elementary school education. Her skills include delivering an inquiry-based program, leading the Mathematics professional learning team and delivering Fountas and Pinnell benchmarking in Reading. She is trained in Apple Education and is experienced with integrating technology into the classroom. Elizabeth is passionate about inspiring a love for all areas of learning in her students; she fosters this by creating engaging and hands-on activities across all subjects.

Elizabeth says, "I am passionate about watching students develop as learners. I love when children have that "light bulb" moment where they connect their learning to the real world. As a teacher, it is an amazing experience to see students being curious about their learning and watching this journey."

 

 

 

Jim Nelson

Grade 3 School Teacher, BEd, MSc

Jim Nelson

Jim is an experienced educator and has been teaching for ten years, 6 of which have been in Hong Kong. He holds a Bachelor of Education degree and a Masters in Psychology. He comes from Northern Ireland and first started learning Chinese as an exchange student during his teacher training.  Jim is experienced in a variety of teaching strategies and is passionate about delivering personalized learning.

Jim says, “I find it fascinating how each child is so unique, not only in how they learn, but also how they develop their personalities and discover their passions. All these factors influence my teaching, and I find that I can learn a lot from my students by finding out how they experience the world.”

 

 

 

 

Kristen Struble

Grade 3 School Teacher, BS, MAT

Kristen Struble

Kristen has a high level of experience in delivering the International Baccalaureate and inquiry-based teaching at her previous schools in both the U.S. and Brazil. She has a Master's in the Art of Teaching for Kindergarten to Grade 6 and also has a K-12 Gifted and Talented endorsement. Kristen is adept in using MAP® testing to inform teaching and learning and incorporates technology to enhance lessons and teach 21st-century skills.  Her years of experience in the classroom in addition to her education give her a variety of strategies to ensure that every learner in her class is engaged and challenged.

Kristen says, "I remember being so excited my first day of Kindergarten because I loved the idea of going to school and getting to learn all day. Years later, I still have that love of learning because I had teachers who fostered my joy and challenged me always to keep searching for answers. Now, I get to spend each day trying to instill that same love of learning in my students and learning from them in return. My favorite part of any day is when students, who keep trying even when something is difficult, finally understand. You can see the joy on their face and pride in themselves, and that's all I need to know that I made a difference."

 

 

Elizabeth Evans

Grade 3 School Teacher, BA, MEd

Elizabeth Evans

Elizabeth has three years of experience teaching lower elementary and is very experienced in fostering the whole child development in lower primary. She recently completed her Master of Education in elementary education from Peabody College at Vanderbilt University. Additionally, Elizabeth holds a license to teach English language learners. Elizabeth has taught in both private and public schools in San Francisco and Nashville. 

Elizabeth says, "I am passionate about creating communities and safe spaces where all students will have the opportunity to take risks and succeed. By integrating social-emotional learning into the curriculum and all classroom activities, I can foster an accepting and open community where students can flourish academically, socially, and emotionally."

 

 

 

Grade 4 Teaching Team

Katie Ennis

Grade 4 School Teacher, BA, MS

Katie Ennis

Katie is originally from Buffalo, New York. She has a Master’s degree from Duquesne University in ESL, and Bachelor’s degree in Elementary Education. She brings enthusiasm and excitement with her experience student teaching in Ireland and in multiple schools throughout Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Katie is passionate about collaborative learning and building a strong core of knowledge.

Katie says, “I’m very excited to be in Hong Kong, to learn a new culture, and to join the Stamford school community. I am motivated each and every day by the teachers and students around me. I had a very enthusiastic and creative teacher in third grade that inspired me to become a teacher myself. She made learning hands-on and applicable to everyday life. I hope to do the same with my own students at Stamford.”

 

 

Amber Rigdon

Grade 4 School Teacher, BSc, MA

Amber Rigdon

Amber is one of our highly experienced teachers from the Stamford Singapore campus who joined us in Hong Kong. She is a specialist in delivering high-quality International Baccalaureate programs in conjunction with Common Core standards. Her experience is grounded in U.S. training, and she has delivered programs based on Fountas and Pinnell phonics, Readers Workshop and Writers Workshop. She is highly competent in the use of technology in classrooms. Amber has led gymnastics, ballet, swimming and cheerleading activities for elementary students.

Amber says, "Being a Google and Apple certified teacher, I am passionate about integrating technology to meet the individual needs and passions of each learner."

 

 

Mallie Buffum

Grade 4 School Teacher, BEd, MA

Mallie Buffum

Mallie is joining Stamford after five years of teaching in Denver, CO.  She holds a bachelors degree in elementary education from Skidmore College and a Masters in curriculum and instruction with a focus on math and science from the University of Colorado.  She is passionate about engaging student voice in the classroom and led her previous school's student council.  One of the main focuses in her professional learning was about bringing creativity into the classroom, especially in math and science. 

Maille says, "I am passionate about engaging students in their learning by fostering their interests and connecting them to the curriculum I am teaching.  I like making learning fun and creative, and love seeing students exploring their passions and figuring out who they are as people. I am so excited to meet the students at Stamford!"

 

 

 

Grade 5 Teaching Team

Rachel Goss

Grade 5 School Teacher, BA, MA

Rachel Goss

Rachel Goss joins the Stamford team with a wealth of knowledge in working with English as an additional language learners (EAL). She received her BA from Indiana University in the USA and her MA from Heidelberg University in Germany. In addition to earning her TEFL (Teaching English as a Foreign Language) certification, Rachel became a Teach for America corps member, where she got her licensed teacher certification specifically focused on teaching English as an additional language. After two years of teaching in Nashville, Tennessee, she moved to Beijing, China, where she taught Mandarin-speaking students from first to sixth grade. She also has experience with leading school-wide charity events, primary school cultural events, soccer club, and environment club.

Rachel says, “I’ve always been curious and passionate about learning new information by exploring the world around me. I make it my goal as a teacher to create that 'spark' for curiosity and questioning to help foster lifelong learners.”

Shari Postemski

Grade 5 School Teacher, BS, MA

Shari Postemski

Shari is a highly experienced U.S.-based teacher who has extensively worked as a classroom teacher in elementary schools. She is an expert in high-quality language and literacy programs. Shari has certification for teacher evaluation being a peer observer and county credentials for teaching the academically and intellectually gifted student. Her interests include cooking, reading, biking, and traveling.

Shari says, "I was in the business sector and decided to do what my heart had always pulled me towards teaching. I have loved each year I have taught; 3rd, 4th and 5th grade. I am most passionate about teaching literacy. It is so amazing to witness a child express himself/herself through writing and be able to communicate and share their imagination, thoughts, and feelings."

 

 

Trishna Harjani

Grade 5 School Teacher, BA

Trishna Harjani

Trishna has been living in Hong Kong for 12 years and has three years of teaching experience at international schools in Hong Kong. She graduated with a Bachelors of Arts in Education at the University of Nottingham and is currently doing her Masters in Science in Digital Age Learning at Johns Hopkins University. Trishna initiated a “Childs Right to Education” programme, where she supports the education of over ten children in India. 

Trishna says, "Growing up in Nigeria and then moving to Hong Kong, I observed the inequality in education. This motivated me to pursue this as a career, with the intention to ensure that every child has the opportunity to receive a quality education. Having been exposed to several different cultures, I believe in the importance of embracing diversity and being compassionate and open-minded towards uniqueness and identity."

Kim Blackhurst, BEd

Grade 5 Teacher

Kim Blackhurst, BEd

Kim joins the Stamford team with experience teaching in an inclusive school in Cape Town, South Africa. She received a Bachelor of Education degree from Stellenbosch University and specialized in Mathematics and Science for the middle school years. With a passion for ICT, Kim is a certified Google educator, with the goal to become an Apple Distinguished Educator shortly. She has a passion for sports and is an experienced netball coach.

Kim says, “I love the excitement that every day brings in my profession. As teachers, we have the wonderful privilege of observing young minds achieving more than they believe they can, as well as facilitating the development of determination and grit in everyday situations.”

 

 

Grade 6 Teaching Team

Dennis Ming Nichols

Grade 6 School Teacher & STEMinn and Math Teacher, BA, MA, PGCE

Dennis Ming Nichols

Originally from the USA, Nichols brings 10 years of international experience teaching Math, Science, ICT, History, and EAL in China, Guatemala, and Hong Kong. He has dedicated his career to middle school and believes the transition from adolescence to adulthood is a unique and fundamental moment for each individual student. He is also an experienced robotics coach and musician who looks forward to supporting those programs at Stamford.

Nichols says, "I am passionate about teaching because I care about our future, and our students are the leaders of that future."

 

 

 

Aidan Quinn

Grade 6 School Teacher, BEd

Aidan Quinn

Aidan joins Stamford after gaining international teaching experience in the UK, Tanzania, the United States, and Spain. He has a Bachelor's Degree in Secondary Education, and he was awarded a scholarship to study in the USA through the British Council due to academic excellence in his home university. In his latest role, Aidan acted as an English Literature and Business Management teacher in Madrid, Spain. Aidan stresses diversity, mutual understanding, and active learning in his lessons to promote a positive learning environment for all learners. 

In addition to his formal teaching experience, Aidan has worked alongside one of the USA's leading financial literacy teacher training programmes, "The National Institute of Financial and Economic Literacy," which formed one of Aidan's passions as an educator; to teach and educate students about effective personal finance management and informed consumerism.

Aidan says, "Being able to ignite passions and nurture desires from a young age is one of the most rewarding things I have experienced, and it's why I love teaching. Education helps drive cultural change and it is an honor to facilitate this process amongst the youth of today."

Carmen Tong

Grade 6 School Teacher, BA, MA

Carmen Tong

Carmen joins our Stamford team with seven years of public high school teaching experience in the U.S. in addition to a year teaching English in Taipei, Taiwan. She received her Master's Degree in Secondary Education in Mathematics from Johns Hopkins University and a Bachelor's Degree in Math and Chinese. Although she was born in the United States, she found it valuable to keep up her Cantonese and Mandarin and finds learning languages fascinating. During the year she was living in Taiwan, she traveled to over ten different countries to compete in ultimate frisbee tournaments and explore. She loves culture and has always dreamed of continuing her travels and teaching abroad, never ceasing to learn and discover new things.

Carmen says, "Some of the most impactful role models in my life have been teachers. So, I hope to help and inspire my students in the same way I was inspired."

Grade 7 Teaching Team

Tristan Benson

Grade 6 Teacher, BA, MEd

Tristan Benson

Tristan joins Stamford with a decade of teaching experience in the U.S. and China. He has a Master of Teaching Secondary Education as well as a Bachelor of Arts in Social Studies. Tristan has taught Geography, Economics, Civics, and History. He also has run many extra-curricular activities such as coding, fitness, and 3D printing.

Tristan says, “I am passionate about humanity and its role on Earth. This is why I decided to become a Humanities teacher. I enjoy engaging in debates and discussions with my students and helping them develop their critical thinking skills. I also have a personal interest in STEMinn as I am a drone enthusiast and coder. I love being able to combine the two subjects that I am passionate about and have students innovate solutions to complex issues using new technology.”

 

 

Ashley Heath

Grade 7 School Teacher, BEd

Ashley Heath

Ashley joins Stamford American International School for her twelfth year of teaching secondary Mathematics. She holds a [B.A.Ed.] in Secondary Mathematics from the University of Mississippi and is currently completing a Masters in Mathematics Education from Harvard University (degree anticipated in 2020). Mrs. Heath has experience in both public and college preparatory schools in the United States, instructing students in a wide range of mathematics courses from 5th-grade mathematics to Advanced Placement Calculus. 

Ashley says, "I have known since a very young age that I wanted to make a career of teaching young people. I am passionate about helping students gain confidence and realize their abilities by encouraging them to continue exploring the vast world of mathematics. Throughout my career, I have worked with a wide variety of students and always enjoy witnessing their satisfaction when they come to understand and master a mathematical concept."

Grade 8 Teaching Team

Caroline Peel

Grade 8 School Teacher & Humanities Teacher, BA, PGCE

Caroline Peel

Caroline joins Stamford with both experiences teaching middle school and high school. Her Bachelor degree is in Humanities from Stellenbosch University, South Africa with majors in English, Psychology, and History. In her Postgraduate studies, Caroline specialized in English, both home language and EAL, History and Life Orientation. In addition to teaching English and Humanities, Ms. Peel has interests in educational psychology, reading and literature, public speaking, drama and singing, netball, swimming and community development.

Caroline says, "I am passionate about empowerment through education and teaching students to take ownership of the opportunities made available to them in a 21st-century classroom setting. I am also passionate about community development and learning new innovative techniques to facilitate and motivate learners to unlock their greatest potential."