Miss Behnke Leaves NDA with Gratitude, Appreciation

Madison Polack, Staff Writer, Advanced Journalism

Natasha Behnke, who has been a student teacher in the music department at NDA, will be well missed. She is originally from Kiel, Wisconsin, and graduated from Kiel High School. She is currently a student at St. Norbert College and will graduate this May.

Miss Behnke decided to follow the career path of becoming a teacher because of her middle school choir teacher, Mrs. Toepel, who inspired her to share her love of music.

Miss Behnke said, “The idea of becoming a music teacher was instilled in me then, and only grew from there as I continued through high school.”

Music is a huge passion of hers, and so is teaching. She believes that becoming a music teacher just seems like the best of both worlds.  Also, she picked St. Norbert College because they were one of the only schools that offered the instrumental/vocal/general music program where she could get triple certified in four years.

“At NDA,” Miss Behnke said, “I’ve learned that a huge part of teaching and earning the respect of students is to have high expectations and to just be myself with my students. I’ve had such a good experience, and NDA is such a good community and family to have my first placement in. I’m really going to miss all of my students and teachers!”

Miss Behnke mentioned that her favorite parts of teaching include seeing students every day and simply doing what she loves, which is teaching. Also, she loved the bonds that she formed with her ensembles including both bands, all choirs and flute choir.

The parts of teaching that are not necessarily the best for Miss Behnke include things that come with trips and fundraisers, which includes money and forms. Miss Behnke said, “This is a necessity, but I can see it being hard to find the time to deal with all of that on top of lesson plans and teaching.”

The next step for Miss Behnke on her journey is to student teach at another placement. She will be student teaching kindergarten through fifth grade at Little Chute Elementary School. After that, she will graduate, and she already has a job lined up for summer school in the Kiel Area School District.

Miss Behnke thinks that NDA is a little bit like her high school, but she said that it is much bigger and a private school.

Lastly, Miss Behnke said, “NDA has been such a welcoming and supportive environment. I think it was a good experience to student teach at a private school like NDA because I was able to see the benefits of a school where students can discuss topics that they would not be able to discuss at a public school. I would give NDA a top notch evaluation, and I really appreciate all the help from students and faculty during my time here. I will miss you all!”