I attended North Cross as a student growing up. I started in kindergarten and after first grade left for a few years before eventually coming back in ninth grade for upper school. My very first teacher at North Cross was Mrs. Hollandsworth and one of my last teachers here was Mr. Cook. I love that they are both still here; it is such an honor being able to work with them.
Have you always wanted to teach?
Not really. I’ve always loved English and reading but after I graduated from North Cross in 2003 I decided I wanted to pursue anthropology in college. I ended up taking an English class that also focused on education. I really enjoyed it and that really was one of the reasons I decided to go into teaching.
Did you have a mentor when you started teaching at North Cross?
Definitely, Gates DeHart. Gates was actually my high school English teacher and has always been really supportive and inspiring. He retired after my first year of teaching, but he really made me feel at home and gave me a lot of great advice that first year. I’m so grateful I had the opportunity to work with him.
What do you enjoy most about teaching?
I love to see how each student responds differently to the texts we read. It is really rewarding to see such unique perspectives from my students. I end up learning from them because each year there is always a new interpretation of the books we read.
What are your favorite books to read?
Personally my favorites are The Great Gatsby and Jane Austen, but in the classroom my favorites are Maus, by Art Spiegelman and Night, by Elie Wiesel. They are both books that we read during our Holocaust unit. The students really get into it, and it often coordinates with what they are studying in World History.
I think you are the only faculty member that has ever taught a sibling. How was that?
I joke and say it’s a good thing I like my family because I see and work with them everyday. Not only has my little sister, Bailey Sanders ’16, been one of my students, but my mom, Patrice Sanders, works in the CrossWalk Program. Honestly, I’m very close with my family so I love having both of them nearby every day.
What do you enjoy doing outside of work?
My husband, Jesse, runs ultra-marathons, so my daughter, Emma, and I spend a lot of time cheering him on at races around the country. I enjoy sewing and reading and as a family we enjoy hiking, spending time outdoors, and traveling.