Three new teachers have arrived in Nakusp, and over the coming weeks, Arrow Lakes News will be profiling each one.
The second teacher is Chelsea Salo, the new K/1 teacher at Lucerne Elementary Secondary School.
ALN: Where are you from?
I’m from Vancouver Island, I grew up in the Comox Valley, then I went to University in Victoria, so I lived there for a couple ofyears while I was going to school.
ALN: What got you interested in teaching?
Salo: I never thought I’d be a teacher. I’m an introvert, and I just never felt that standing up in front of a group was going tobe something that I would ever want to do, but when I finished university, I went travelling, and I ended up teaching English alittle bit in China, and I really loved it. I got a job at an international school as an assistant in a classroom, and some of theteachers I was working with said, ‘You should try, you should be a teacher.’”
I started taking long distance courses for the pre-requesites for the teacher training program, and I just moved back last yearto Canada and went to SFU (Simon Fraser University) to get my teacher certificate.
ALN: How did you hear about Lucerne?
Salo: When I was finishing up at SFU this past year, most of the people I went to school with who were also graduating werefrom the lower mainland, and they really wanted to stay, but staying would be pretty much guaranteeing that I would be ateacher on call, and I had never done that, I’d had my own classroom in Beijing for three years, so I started looking furtheroutside the lower mainland. It was an opportunity for me to have my own classroom, and kindergarten/Grade 1 is the agegroup that I’ve always worked with, and what I wanted to teach, so it was kind of a perfect fit.
ALN: What do you think of New Denver?
Salo: So far we’re loving it, it’s gorgeous. My classroom looks out on the mountains, and I can walk home from school, and it’sbreath taking. Sometimes I stop, and I look at the mountains and the lake and just think ‘This is where I’m living,’ and thecommunity is so open. I feel like I’ve met more people here than I ever had in Burnaby. Everyone knows each other, and it’s areally cool place.
ALN: You’re about a month into the school year, how are things going?
Salo: It’s been really great. I feel like we’re so busy already. It’s the fourth week of school and we’ve had harvest fest, we’vehad a field trip with the elementary school to Bonanza Creek to look at the red fish, and we’ve had Bike Day, so there havebeen three kind of big events already, and they’re all outdoors. I am learning so much, and the families in my classroom are solovely. Everyone is really welcoming, and on the staff, everyone is so supportive. I’m so happy to be here.
ALN: Do you see yourself staying here long term?
Salo: We came here committed to definitely staying for a couple of years, because we didn’t know what it was going to be like,but our first impression, we are loving it, so we can see ourselves staying.