Staff Spotlight: Cathy Roether- Dick
Q: Can you tell us a little bit about yourself? Your background, your interests, your dreams?
I am truly blessed to have been married to my high school sweetheart, Matt, for 31 years. We are the parents of our two wonderful daughters, Christina (26) and Sara (23) both of whom married within a span of ten months. They gifted us with our two spectacular sons-in-law: Shane and Hayden.
When I am not spending time with my family and friends, I enjoy many outdoor activities from paddleboarding, kayaking and swimming in the summer, to ice skating in the winter. An evening walk with my dog, Bailey, is another activity I cherish.
I obtained my bachelor’s degree from BGSU, received my infant and toddler certification from UT and my Montessori certification from Seton in Illinois.
Q: What’s your favorite Montessori quote?
“ Within the child lies the fate of the future.”
Q: What do you love about Montessori?
I love that Montessori celebrates the uniqueness of every child. When children learn that they are capable of doing amazing things it benefits their self-esteem and confidence.
Q: What is your favorite area in the classroom and why?
My favorite area of the Montessori classroom is the practical life area because it provides the foundation for all other areas in the Montessori classroom. Through exercises in daily living such as pouring, spooning and clean up, a child gains confidence and mastery of their environment. These activities contribute to a child’s coordination, concentration and self-esteem which comes along with making a real-life contribution.
Q: What would you tell a prospective family about West Side?
Students at West Side are encouraged to display independence, responsibility and respect for others in a nurturing environment. West Side is truly a community where everyone values everyone else in a positive manner.
Q: What first appealed to you about Montessori?
What first appealed to me about Montessori is that it allows for children to work, develop and learn at their own pace. The Montessori curriculum is designed around the specific needs and abilities of each child giving them the freedom to explore at their own pace. The freedom to follow their interests will allow them to develop a love for continuous learning.
Q: What continues to inspire you about Montessori?
I am continually inspired most by Montessori in that it encourages a love of learning. I see the biggest long term impact is that Montessorians remain perpetually curious about people and the world around them. Learning is viewed as an enjoyable life long process rather than a burden.
Q: Why did you choose to teach/work here?
I truly love my job at West Side and enjoy coming to school every day. Not only are my colleagues positive and a wonderful group of people to work with, but I find that our West Side families recognize the beneficial impact of a positive early learning environment for their children.
I feel that West Side is a community where everyone cares about everyone else.
Q: How do students inspire/motivate you?
My students motivate and inspire me every day through their sense of wonderment with the world around them and how they experience joy with things I have come to take for granted.
I was reminded of this recently when the first snowfall occurred. As an adult, my first thought as it snowed was, “Oh no; how will this affect my drive home?” But as my students awakened from their naps they gleefully walked to the door to catch a glimpse of the beautiful white snow falling gently outside. Their true bliss at that moment inspired me to disregard my “to-do list” for a few moments and fully immerse myself in the enjoyment of watching the first snowfall of the season.
Young children truly cherish every moment and every new experience. As adults, we would benefit at times to step back and view the world with the wonderment of a young child.
Kathy has been a teacher at West Side since 2014. She earned her bachelor’s in Education from Bowling Green State University and Montessori Certificated by AMS at Seton Montessori Institue for Infant and Toddler Levels.
West Side Montessori is an independent, accredited Montessori school educating children 13 months through 8th grade (preschool, kindergarten, elementary and middle school) with locations at 13587 Roachton Rd in Perrysburg, Ohio, and 7115 W. Bancroft Street in Toledo, Ohio.