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Nancy Kleine

From as early as I can remember, I was inspired to be a teacher. Born in Homer in 1956, the first baby girl born in the Homer hospital, I played outdoors, picking berries, fishing for king crab off the city dock, building fern forts, and swimming at Green Timbers on the spit, but when not outdoors, I was playing school. If my friends were not available to be my students, I used my dolls, balls, marbles, or whatever was available! I also loved reading, so my “students” had many a story read to them. These early experiences were practice for my later work and play.

From as early as I can remember, I was inspired to be a teacher. Born in Homer in 1956, the first baby girl born in the Homer hospital, I played outdoors, picking berries, fishing for king crab off the city dock, building fern forts, and swimming at Green Timbers on the spit, but when not outdoors, I was playing school. If my friends were not available to be my students, I used my dolls, balls, marbles, or whatever was available! I also loved reading, so my “students” had many a story read to them. These early experiences were practice for my later work and play.My adult life directly reflects my childhood. With an English degree and teaching certificate in hand, I taught for 3 years in the village of Perryville on the Alaska Peninsula, then made my way back to Homer where I’ve taught preschool through college, worked in private school and public education, and eventually earned my administrative degree to become a “teacher of teachers” as principal in Nanwalek and Port Graham for my last six of forty years as an educator. Amidst every day of my career, I found time to be in nature (alone or with kids) hiking or biking the beach or trails, kayaking, picking berries, or simply appreciating the rich world in which we are fortunate to live.

As a recent retiree, I am still yearning to work for children. Supportive of Sprout since its beginnings, I am now delighted to offer my experience as a board member, for Sprout’s mission, “promoting the healthy development of children,” is one and the same with what compelled me to teach for 40 years. It truly is the answer to opening each child’s potential and building a healthy community. Every child deserves the nurturing that will help them discover their gifts, for only then can they move into the world to contribute in healthy ways and ensure such a world for their own children and beyond.

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