Beyond the Classroom



Taking tours of Alaska, visiting Israel, and earning a Master's degree are just a sampling of what our Westminster teachers did this summer.

Whitney Diehl Summer | Westminster

Chrissy Almodovar, Fifth Grade Teacher

Chrissy Almodovar held a book club in her home for the rising 5th graders. The students read, Sign of the Beaver, and enjoyed getting together to discuss it.




Tommy Brinson, MS Band Director

Mr. Brinson had an opportunity to tour the world with his band, they played events in FL, GA, SC, IA, CA and Israel. While in Israel they had the chance to play for a group of holocaust survivors and lead worship for a messianic congregation.




Sandy Buchanan, Elizabeth Meeks, Destiny Pippin, Kathy Slaten (Lower School)

Our very own Sandy Buchanan, Elizabeth Meeks, Destiny Pippin, Kathy Slaten traveled to Dallas, Texas in June for the Units of Study in Reading and Writing Conference.




Brian Case, Head of School

Brian Case traveled to South Fork, Colorado this summer to relax and fish in the Rio Grande River and high mountain lakes of Southwest Colorado. As a part of his vacation, Brian hosted the 2019 Westminster "Denim and Diamonds Auction" Colorado fishing trip winners, Dennis and Lisa Cheeks. Three days of fishing and adventure in the cool Colorado climate yielded lots of fun, many memories, and plenty of trout like the ones pictured below.



Whitney Diehl, Upper School English Teacher & Department Chair

This summer Mrs. Diehl took a trip to Europe with her husband and had the opportunity to visit England to see the Bront Parsonage, former home of Charlotte Brontë. She was able to learn more about Bront, and her novel Jane Eyre, which is read in Mrs. Diehl's senior AP Literature class.


Christal Duggan, Assistant to Head of School/Development Coordinator

Ms. Duggan traveled to Provo, Utah for a mission trip with her church in June. Their mission team went to help Redeemer Church with their annual Pie and Root Beer Festival. Each year, the church uses this event to reach out to the Provo community and share the love of Jesus with them.



Vivan Hornsby, Upper & Middle School Art Teacher

Mrs. Hornsby's summer ceramic camp spent time with local artist and art professor at Augusta University, Brian Rust. They had an incredible opportunity to see his latest installation, Stone Boat on the canal.




Jennifer Patterson, Third Grade Teacher

Mrs. Patterson and her family had the opportunity to visit Alaska on a cruise. She also spent a week in NYC at Teacher's College of Columbia University, receiving training in the writing workshop model. At the Writing Institute, she received in-depth coaching in how to present mini-lessons that briefly and explicitly teach the writing strategies that published authors use. She claimed, "It was one of the best courses of my professional career!"


Cindy Pantsari, Middle & Upper School Academic Support Coordinator, English Teacher

This summer Mrs. Pantsari completed a Master of Education in Curriculum and Instruction with a Reading Endorsement from Georgia Southern University. When asked why she chose this program she said, I wanted to be better prepared to meet the diverse academic and affective needs of our students. I learned exciting ways to incorporate technology to improve student learning, as well as how to use assessments for learning and not just as a summative end to a unit. I participated in collegial forums that provided opportunities to discuss ways to successfully apply best practices in the classroom. I'm excited to employ these practices this year to better enhance student learning!??

Julie Wiggins, Fourth Grade Teacher

Mrs. Wiggins and her husband traveled to Alaska and had the opportunity to visit Glacier Bay. They were able to learn about the Alaska rainforest and its many ecosystems!




Courtney Wilckens, Fourth Grade Teacher

Mrs. Wilckens enjoyed a relaxing cruise to the Bahamas with her husband. She also enjoyed helping with WildCat Jr. Camp all summer, where oftentimes she could be found in a variety of fun costumes.







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