Almost every adult that walks in the door of Ardmore Family Literacy announces they are terrible at math. I always think to myself, you and me both! I actually get anxiety listening to them working in class sometimes. It brings up all kinds of memories of high school inadequacy.
Enter Nancy Etheredge, math teacher extraordinaire. Nancy started teaching for us in 2016. She is a retired high school math teacher who knows she has more to offer than putting down her chalk and walking away from educating. She just needed more time to travel and enjoy her family life. We thank our lucky stars that she chose Ardmore Family Literacy with which to join forces and empower adults to complete their GED.
Each Thursday & Friday thru the school year she rolls into the classroom smiling and inquiring how each student is doing. Some of our students are young mothers and they love to ask her advice on childrearing. She has a soft but no-nonsense style that disarms those feeling apprehensive and begins to build them up all at once.
Recognizing that students respond and learn in different manners, Ms. Etheredge can spot the “deer in headlights look”, only to assure them to hold on, we will find YOUR way to get this concept. Minutes later, it’s like a lightbulb actually comes on and a large smile of accomplishment lands on the once-weary students face. She reminded one, fraction confused student just today that there are many different ways to get to Wal Mart. We will find out your way to get you understanding this problem.
For those adults who think they could never learn the concepts needed to pass their high school equivalency, the fears soon melt away. Replaced with a new zest and curiosity for what other ways could I improve myself or education? A domino effect ensues and the results are new door’s opening for our students. It’s the effect we are wanting for sure!
Teachers like Nancy Etheredge don’t come along every day. I feel like somewhere there is a former employer secretly plotting my demise for hiring her and taking away their chance to have this responsible, caring and unique math mind on staff. I am staying alert. 😉
A requirement of being involved in an adult basic education program is that one must have a genuine interest in the adult students. What they lack in education level they always make up in intuitiveness. They can spot a fraud quickly. Nancy Etheredge is as genuine as they come. Changing lives two days a week and fitting in world travel the other five. A win for her, AFL students and the future of Ardmore’s workforce!