Hello! My name is Bianca Penny-Harley

I was born in New Jersey raised in Puerto Rico since the age of 8. I'm fully bilingual which I consider very fortunate to be. Although English is my first language orally, I consider Spanish my first language. My vocabulary and my writing skills in Spanish are much better.

At the moment my family consists of me, my husband Sean and my two cats Boots and Puss.

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I have lived in Virginia Beach now for 5 years and although I miss the loud and in your face culture of Puerto Rico; not to mention the weather, I am very happy here. I have a Bachelors degree in Business Administration from the University of Puerto Rico with a concentration in hospitality and restaurant management. My biggest passion is art. Below are some pictures of my artwork, you can see more of it at http://bpenny12.deviantart.com/

Besides painting some of my other hobbies are singing, bike ridding, bowling and watching interior design shows.

Hopefully in the future I will be teaching Spanish in Middle and High School, maybe to adults as well later on. After tutoring my brother through his Spanish classes in middle and high school I noticed that I actually enjoyed it. I realized that after working many years in the hospitality industry my time was very limited with family and friends because of the crazy schedules, plus I hated working weekends. After actually seing how my brother learned the language that I love so much and that he actually enjoyed the process it made me want to give that feeling to many other people and that is what motivated me to start a teaching program.

My educational Philosophy... I believe that what makes a good teacher is someone who is passionate about actually having his or her students succeed; leaving the classroom with understanding of the material and an appreciation of the information they have just gained. Good teachers stimulate forward thinking and personal growth throughout the school years. Regardless of what I would be teaching I would like to be the kind of teacher that stimulates students to want to learn and enjoy the process of learning. From personal experience I strongly believe that the student body should be diversified but controlled. Students with special needs should be handled in specialized schools for their benefit. Students should not be grouped by ability; this creates a foundation of segregation within the student body. I strongly believe in bilingual education. Coming from a bilingual education myself I consider it a privilege. Knowing another language allows student to be influenced by new things from other cultures. It allows the student to become more diversified as well as become a better well rounded citizen of the world. Having a second or third language also opens doors to many opportunities in the future since many countries are becoming more integrated by the day. Ebonics does not belong in the school systems. It is a street language within a community that I do not consider important enough to be in the school system. No student should be treated any different but "at risk" children should be handled with a more subtle approach.

In the future I picture my classroom environment to be fun and challenging. Student interaction is a must. I am the first to say I am not big on working in a group sometimes but there are many benefits and skills to be learned from them. Student-teacher interaction should be kept friendly but professional. There needs to be a clear distinction between child and adult and who is in charge in the classroom. Parents should be involved throughout the entire time there child is in the school system especially in the earlier years. The parent’s involvement dictates many times how well a student does within a class. Since I am fairly new to teaching I mostly plan on using techniques that work. Student projects that are related to what is in the now and what is real to them, motivating them to learn not because they have to but because they find it interesting and relative to their world. I think that when you treat children with respect it is reciprocated unless other problems are present. Students need to feel important and part of a class. When they feel this way they participate more, are not afraid to state their opinion whether it is correct or incorrect and therefore to learn the material internalizing it.