Teacher Spotlight: Laura Woodall - Ivywood

Teacher Spotlight: Laura Woodall

Laura Woodall is our special education teacher at Ivywood. She has had a wealth of experience in education and brings a genuine commitment to the Ivywood community. She builds genuine and respectful relationships with students and their families so that they can work together as a team. She aspires for each of her students to bloom into critical thinkers and lifelong learners!

Read more about Ms. Laura Woodall and her educational journey here.

Where were you born and raised? 

I was born in Livonia, Michigan and grew up in Livonia. When I was ten, I moved to Novi and I currently reside in Commerce Township.

What is your favorite part of teaching?

My favorite part of teaching is having rich conversations with students; where they explain what they are thinking and ask new questions. I am also passionate about literacy and watching my students grow into readers and writers.  When students realize what they can do–the smiles become contagious!

Who inspired you or why did you choose to become a teacher?  

During my first few years in college, I completed many different teaching practicums in a variety of educational settings. It was through the practicum experiences that I chose to become a teacher. Teaching and working with children brings a sense of contentment and I get to learn new things on a daily basis; I have a strong growth mindset and love to instill that in the students I work with.

How long have you been in education? What drives you to be the best special education teacher? 

I have been teaching for over twenty joyful years!  My fidelity to the classical model of education and commitment to Ivywood Academy’s mission and vision drives me to be the best special education teacher I can be!  I enjoy meeting the needs of each student I work with and instilling virtuous behavior, with students, on a daily basis.

Who were some of the most influential teachers you had growing up? What made them so impactful?  

Ms. Harris-Freeman was the most influential colleague I have worked with.  Ms. Harris-Freeman set very high academic achievement standards and instilled personal discipline in her students. Ms. Harris-Freeman’s ability to build positive relationships with students and set high expectations for them made me the dedicated teacher I am today.

What drew you to classical education? What about it makes you want to teach in a classical education setting?  

The Socratic method of discussion and lecturing, along with direct teacher instruction and the rigorous curriculum, while instilling virtues so students can become moral and intellectual leaders in a self-governing society drew me to wondering, reading and learning about the classical model of education.  My research and learning about Ivywood Classical Academy’s opening gave me the drive and ambition to put this style of teaching into practice.

How would a student best describe you? 

My students would describe me as kind, caring and I make them do work!

What do you do outside of the classroom? 

When I am not in the classroom, I enjoy spending my time at the beach with my family and hiking through the woods with my daughter.  I love family movie nights!