60-Second Interview: Joanna Tucker P’19, English Teacher & Star Dorm Head


When I was growing up, I wanted to be:

A competitive figure skater.

A few words or phrases that describe my approach to teaching/ working with teenagers:

Patience, kindness and understanding

I am constantly surprised by:

How I never think “ugh I have to go to work today!”

Describe a student who's done well at Marvelwood:

A student wrote an ode to his hairbrush.  He had never written a poem before and it was amazing! 

I know I'm reaching a student when:

They are no longer in my class but tell me how much they miss it or ask for my help.

A favorite project I've done with students:

Greek god or goddess speeches.  They get better every year!

The best thing about raising children on a boarding school campus is:

Too many to say - don’t know how I could do it without this community.

If I could take a trip anywhere with students, it would be:

Back in time to meet Maya Angelou

I am currently reading:

Nadiya’s British Food Adventure (cookbook)

The book I'm recommending these days:

Anything by Maya Angelou

This is what I would tell my first-year/ first-month-teaching self:

You don’t have to have all the answers!

What I like about teaching at Marvelwood:

Everything!  Each day is different.

The funniest/ most interesting/ most memorable thing a student said:

I love English again!  Or, when they run to open the door for me!

Three things I want my students to take away:

Perseverance, compassion, and remember to breathe!

When I'm not teaching, I like to:

Cook, exercise


Joanna teaches English and strategies and helps out with the gardening program. She is the Head of Star Dorm, where she lives with her two daughters and two cats. When school is not in session, she loves traveling, especially to the English countryside.