Meet the Teachers: Paulina and Tim

At School Visits, we believe that learning is an ongoing form of personal growth and development that can take place beyond the classroom setting. Using our 10-acre site, our contemporary galleries, craft studios, and our theatres as well as our downtown streets, School Visits is a unique setting for dialogue, engagement and imagination. We aim to create positive experiences for our visiting students; we want them to leave feeling good about themselves, their efforts, and their art. And our teachers make all of this possible! They work hard to create wonderful memories of “the best field trip ever” and, as we have quite a wonderful group of teachers, we wanted to take this opportunity to introduce you to some of them.

Paulina

Paulina is a Toronto entrepreneur, spoken word artist, community worker, program facilitator and youth activist who works and performs across Toronto. The former coordinator of R.H.Y.M.E. poetry collective (Revolutionaries Honoring Your Mind’s Eye) Paulina is influenced by her diverse descent and her work in multiple communities, bringing her passion to the page and the stage. Her poetry, which covers a diverse range of topics from love to revolution, appears in print in ‘Guerillas of the Word’ and “If I Ran the School.” Paulina has been using spoken word to teach young people in a number of communities about self education, expression and empowerment for the last 7 years. In addition to teaching at Harbourfront, she has and continues to teach workshops for schools, community centres and community organizations such as Toronto Kiwanis Boys and Girls Club, Delisle Youth Services, Canadian Stage and Art Starts.

In her own words:

What is your favourite field trip memory from your school days?

My favorite field trip memory was going to a theatre to see a production of Shakespeare’s King Lear.

What is your favourite School Visits programme to teach and why?

Let’s SLAM! Spoken Word Poetry Performance Art is my favourite programme to teach because I am a spoken word artist and I love to see the amazing works that are created by young people by the end of the class!

What is your favourite thing to do when you aren’t teaching?

My favorite thing to do when I am not teaching is to read and to spend time with family.

Tim

Tim has worked with School Visits since 2008, taking on many roles over the years. Currently, he is the Education Officer for Media and Urban Studies and Outdoor Education. This means he gets to spend a lot of time exploring our city and our harbour! Tim is a certified teacher and spent a year teaching abroad before; he is passionate about education and is always looking for opportunities to expose students to new forms of cultural expression and artistic endeavours throughout his teaching practice. Additionally, Tim is a familiar face to Harbourfront Centre Camps, having been a valuable mentor to many of our current staff both as a colleague and as the leader of our Counsellors-in-Training programme.

In his own words:

What is your favourite field trip memory from your school days?

One of the most memorable field trip memories from my childhood would have to be the chance to head to Washington DC and Gettysburg, Pennsylvania for a high school American History class. Over the four days, we had the chance to visit many important buildings, experience some battle re-enactments and generally enjoy the balmy weather (it was April or May and we were all in shorts enjoying the cherry blossoms)!

What is your favourite School Visits programme to teach and why?

I absolutely LOVE to teach Government Studies. It is a programme that has strong links to the Grade 5 citizenship unit and provides a chance for students to see their government in action. Our students begin the day with an exploration at City Hall, then head to Old City Hall to meet with a judge on recess. In the afternoon, they have the chance to explore the historic roots of the city and connect the present and past uses of buildings around the city. It is fantastic to see students really connect with their city and discover that every corner in the downtown core has something historic lurking behind it. Also, it’s a fantastic way to allow students to explore downtown!

What is your favourite thing to do when you aren’t teaching?

I’m an avid traveller and I love to explore different areas, regions or neighbourhoods far and wide. My most recent vacation has taken me to Southeast Asia during the summer break. Coming up, I will be heading to Boston and (hopefully!) back to England again in the near future!

For more information about School Visits, please click here or call us at 416.973.4091, and stay tuned to the blog to learn more about our teachers!