Sherida Penman Walters
How did you first get involved in teaching, what attracted you to this profession?
From the day I started school, I always wanted to be a teacher. I was very fortunate to have many teachers who were caring, supportive and challenging.
Describe what it means to you to be a teacher?
Teaching is a huge responsibility as you carry the health and wellbeing of every student for the six hours they are at school. It is so positive to work with passionate young students, leading them into extending their knowledge, skill and understanding. Teaching is about growing great human beings.
What attracted you to Pinehurst?
Pinehurst is pioneering new pathways of learning within a community of teachers, students and parents. It is a strongly values based environment where people truly respect and care for one another.
What do you enjoy most about working/teaching at Pinehurst School?
The community is positive overall. The school is continually improving and developing. The staff are passionate about education, their students and the growth and development of Pinehurst.
What would you say are some of your strongest beliefs about education?
Students first of all need to feel secure and positive in their relationships with their peers and their teachers. Great teaching is based on great relationships. To me that comes first. Then comes the subject knowledge and excellent teaching practice.
Explain why you like teaching the Cambridge Curriculum?
The Cambridge Curriculum balances structure with creativity. It is globally recognised. CIE ensures every curriculum is theory based and up to date. There are excellent resources available, ensuring staff can differentiate their teaching programmes. We can effectively use CIE programmes from Year 1 – 13.
Where did you train and what qualifications do you hold?
I trained initially at Auckland College of Education however over the years, I have continued to gain qualifications and have a BA in History and Anthropology, Masters Degree in Educational Administration – both from Auckland University, and a Post Graduate Diploma in Dispute Resolution from Massey University.
Has teaching always been your profession?
I have had a few changes from teaching including working in a travel agency and managing the office of a plastics factory, as well as brief times off when I had each of my three sons.
What are you most passionate about professionally? What most excites you about your work & the contribution you can make?
I believe that we can make a positive difference to everyone we come in contact with. I have had many great comments over the years I have spent in Education students and teachers who tell me sincerely that I helped them develop their lives in a positive direction
Are you involved in any volunteer, fundraising activities, associations or professional bodies or have you received and awards, medals or even medallions?
I have been a member of East Coast Bays Rotary for 20 years. Within that organisation, I have been able to contribute to many projects both in New Zealand and overseas. I have received a Paul Harris Fellowship in recognition of my volunteer community efforts.
What are you passionate about personally? What do you really enjoy? Briefly tell us about you
My family comes first in my life, and I spend many happy non-working hours with them. I love reading and all types of books; I am a keen walker and love Pilates. I love combining all of these on New Zealand’s great beaches.