Skip To ContentSkip To Content
    New QAE 2019 - 2020 Staff Members
    Posted on 05/10/2019
    This is the image for the news article titled New QAE 2019 - 2020 Staff MembersJerrika Dickerson is currently a 1st grade teacher in Haltom City, Texas. Chosen to be her school's Teacher of the Year in 2018-2019, she brings her enthusiasm for multiage classes and her passion for learning and teaching to QAE. She was a member of her school's Building Leadership Team, she was selected to be on a district-level collaboration team on math curriculum development and advanced learning programs, and she was on a school-based team to launch her school as a specialty school.
    "I am greatly looking forward to my first year as a Seattleite educator at Queen Anne Elementary this year! I graduated from Dallas Baptist University in 2017 and have been teaching the most wonderful first graders in Texas for the past two years. I am a Colorado native, and a Texan by marriage, but my husband and I are anxious to begin our next adventure in North Seattle this summer. To me, education is more than a passion, it is my calling. I am dedicated to learning beside my students as we tackle new challenges and continually grow. I am overjoyed to be joining the learning movement at QAE and invest in the creative community that thrives here. My simple joys include reading everywhere, all the time, the smell of roasted garlic, and shopping local! I also love cooking my husband a "phenomenal" dinner, swimming, and coffee dates. I just can't wait to meet you!"

    Maddie Ginder was a Kindergarten Team Leader in Orlando, Florida before moving to Seattle in 2018. She has been a SPS guest teacher, including teaching at QAE during the past year, so we are excited to welcome her permanently to our community. She finishes her long-term substitute position as Reading Specialist at Blaine in June 2019. Maddie will officially become Maddie Scannapieco this July. 
    "I am very excited to be joining the QAE community! After growing up on Bainbridge Island, I attended Rollins College in Winter Park, Florida where I received my bachelor's in Elementary Education while playing college soccer and soaking up the sunshine. Following Rollins, I taught kindergarten at an incredible school named Grand Avenue in the heart of downtown Orlando. I fell in love with teaching primary grades during this time and knew this is where I wanted to be. In 2016 after I had to go on unexpected sick-leave from teaching, my fiancé Nick and I, and our puppy Finn moved to Seattle to be closer to family. I have spent the last 2 years transitioning back into my love of teaching as a substitute for Seattle Public Schools, most recently as a long-term Reading Specialist at Catharine Blaine K - 8 School. I am incredibly grateful to have my health back and to be able to do what I love most, teach! This summer my fiancé Nick and I are getting married on Bainbridge Island and we cannot wait! Outside of our careers, you can find us outside hiking, exercising, exploring PNW, eating good food, reading, watching movies and spending time with our family and friends!"

    Rachel Scheer is a National Board-Certified teacher in literacy, has 8 years' experience as a lead teacher and 4 years' experience as a Literacy and Learning Specialist. She brings her passion for teaching and her expertise in multi-age teaching to QAE.
    "My favorite part of teaching is following student questions and interests and all of the unexpected places they take us! Over the past eight years I have taught fifth, first, and fourth grades and a 2nd/3rd grade multiage class. I absolutely love being a lifelong learner beside my student. I grew up just outside of Washington, D.C. area and attended the College of William and Mary in Virginia for my undergraduate degree. I later moved to Philadelphia to attend the University of Pennsylvania for my graduate degree in education. After years of living on the east coast, I picked up and moved to Seattle in 2014. I instantly felt a connection with this dynamic city and the surrounding mountains and water. I never want to leave! I currently live in Capitol Hill with my husband and two cats. If it's nice out, you can find us on our porch with friends. You might also look for me on my yoga mat, on a hike, or at my artist table writing and illustrating comics!"

    Mike Backman is currently a 5th grade teacher at Midway Elementary School in Des Moines, WA. He has taught in the U.S., Ireland and Thailand, which allows him to bring his knowledge and appreciation for culturally responsive teaching to his students and families. 
    "I couldn't be more excited to be a part of the Queen Anne Elementary team! I have been working in education for the past 6 years after earning my B.A. from The University of Iowa and my M.Ed from Seattle University. After graduating from Iowa, I spent time teaching in Ireland, Thailand and Minnesota before I decided to move to the pacific northwest 4 years ago to teach 5th grade. I fell in love with Seattle immediately and have never looked back on my decision to move west from snowy Minneapolis! When I am not in the classroom, I enjoy spending time outside hiking, running, reading, and drinking coffee. I am thrilled to start this new chapter and can't wait to meet everyone who makes the Queen Anne Elementary community great!"

    Liz Hartmann is an experienced 4th grade teacher who is currently a professor at the University of Washington coaching elementary pre-service teachers with innovative instructional practices. She completes her doctorate program in July and can't wait to get back to the classroom to focus on learning and research-based teaching with students and their families. 
    "I'm excited to be joining the Queen Anne community this fall! Originally from Southern California, I taught in Los Angeles before moving to Seattle to study curriculum and instruction at UW and to coach preservice teachers in Seattle schools. I took a two-year break from my studies to teach at the University of Fukui in Japan and work with teachers in Japan and Singapore on a collaborative project studying project-based learning. After teaching mathematics education courses for Western Washington University and finishing my doctorate at UW, I couldn't be more thrilled to be back in the classroom! All my experiences have led me right back to the most important part about teaching: students. I'm excited to join a school community that focuses on students' social and emotional learning and project-based learning. Outside of the classroom, I enjoy cooking and trying new foods, hanging out with my partner and our dog Ginger, traveling, and doing anything that gets me outside, like hiking and rowing."

    Elizabeth Thruelsen comes to QAE via an immersion charter school in Los Angeles, California. She has taught in the United States, Turkey and Spain. She brings her 8 years of teaching experience to QAE with a focus on innovative teaching practices, leadership, literacy and technology. She has been a team leader planning professional development and community-based projects, such as cultural celebrations.
    "I am so excited to join Queen Anne Elementary this year! After spending a decade away from the area, I am so inspired to find the school of my dreams right back in my home! Project-Based Learning, partnerships with parents, and an intentional focus on Social-Emotional Learning? Yep, I knew QAE was "the one!" I studied Spanish Language and Culture and earned my TESOL certificate at Western Washington University in Bellingham. Years later, I returned to school and graduated with my MA.Ed at Loyola Marymount University in Los Angeles. Over the years I've been so fortunate to have teaching experiences in a public school in Spain, an international school in Turkey, a Catholic school in Long Beach, and a public dual-immersion school in Los Angeles. Every experience in my teaching has reaffirmed with conviction that our children are at the center of education, not teachers. Now, coming into my 8th year of teaching, I can't imagine a better place to be than at Queen Anne Elementary. Outside of the classroom, I am a Pacific Northwest enthusiast: I love coffee-house culture, our excellent alternative rock scene, and a good hike. I'm an active member in a lay-Buddhist organization and recently became a member of the Nordic Heritage Museum. After filling my passport last year, I'm determined to travel abundantly and fill my new one! I'm looking forward to meeting the families and children of Queen Anne Elementary and joining this great community!"

    Specialists:
    Ms. Lauren Appel has been an art teacher and museum educator in Seattle for 17 years, responsible for coordinating many community arts programs, such as Washington Teaching Artist Training Lab. Known throughout the Seattle art education community, she has been both a Visual Arts teacher and theatre teacher around our community. We are so fortunate to have Lauren join our staff to lead our Visual Arts/MakerSpace initiatives. 
    "I am very excited to join the QAE community! I hold a BA from Smith College and a master's degree in museum education from Bank Street College of Education. For over fifteen years I have worked in education departments of museums and community-based arts organization, including Seattle Children's Theatre Hilltop Artists, Youth Theatre Northwest, Rubin Museum of Art, and the Guggenheim Museum, where I've worked with students of all ages. After many years of teaching in dozens of public-school classrooms each year as a visiting teaching artist, I'm very excited to join the QAE community to focus all my creative energy at one school and collaborate with colleagues, students, and families to explore visual arts and grow our MakerSpace together! When I'm not teaching I am seeking creative outlets for myself and my 4-year-old, spending time outdoors, telling my two cats that I have already fed them, or engaging in social justice solidarity work in my community."

    Dr. Emily Valdez is our enthusiastic new librarian. She has been a Special Education teacher and ELL teacher and will now become our QAE teacher librarian. She brings her doctorate in educational innovations and policy and her rich teaching experience to lead our beloved library. 
    "I'm so excited to be part of the QAE community as a teacher librarian. After earning my BA from Bowdoin College, I traveled the world for a year on my own to get a better sense of what I wanted to do with my life. After a short stint in a software start-up, I went back to school to get my M.Ed in special education. For three years I taught special education in a high school in rural Idaho and decided that I wanted to get my doctorate. I headed for Seattle and started the program at UW. After fifteen years of doing research on educational innovations and policy, I decided that I missed the classroom and most of all I missed daily interactions with students and other teachers. I recently went back to school (again) to get my endorsement in library and media science at SPU where I discovered the best job possible---teacher librarian, which combines my absolute love of books and kids. When I'm not in the library, I enjoy hiking, camping, and playing sports with my daughter, Eva, my husband and my black lab, Helo."