Throughout this series, we will be introducing new staff that recently joined the Viking family as of this year. Helping students get to know those around the building and through the screens. Photo Courtesy of: Shanna Thorn

Shanna Thorn graduated from Portland High School in 2009, and graduated from Western Michigan in 2015.

It took her six years to earn her degree while working as a manager at a daycare, but that experience is where she found her passion in education.

“That’s part of why I became a teacher because I loved working with students,” said Thorn. “I worked with a student with special needs, she had Cerebral Palsy and needed help getting around after school [and] I even helped in tutoring her.”

Before coming to Everett, Thorn taught at Onekama High School for five years.

In Onekema, a small town in northern Michigan, she was three hours away from her family and friends.

“I didn’t know a single person,” said Thorn. “I was like an alien since I didn’t know anybody there.”

Thorn became involved in many things within the community, by working the athletic events, attending student dance recitals, and even coached eighth grade Volleyball.

“In high school I played volleyball and tennis, but ended up quitting senior year because I decided to work instead as a nanny,” said Thorn.

Eventually, she knew she didn’t want to stay up there and wanted to come back with her family in Portland.

Once Corona hit, she moved back down state and was hired at Everett over the summer. 

Thorn has a special bond with her family. Now that she’s closer to home and has found a house where she’ll be moving into soon, she’ll do what she loves doing the most which is spending time with her family and dog. 

“My parents have done so much for me and one of my goals is to try to support them during my adult life as they get older as much as they’ve helped me,” said Thorn.

On Netflix, Thorn loves to watch New Girl, The Office, and cheesy sappy romantic movies.

Being certified to teach 6-12 math, she teaches Algebra 1 with ELL students and Geometry. She said she tries to be considerate of her students’ well being.

“I try not to overwhelm them with homework and help answer questions as much as I can. We’re all trying to figure this out,” said Thorn.  “I can’t stand the thought of putting so much stress and work on kids to the point that they’re crying at home.”

If it weren’t for the pandemic, she’d already be having fun decorating her classroom to make it cozy for students and as well as getting to know them on a personal level.

“I miss having interaction with kids and getting to know them and not just how they type in the chat,” said Thorn.

All in all, she hopes to become a part of the Everett community and be a teacher that students feel that they can rely on not only to learn about math, but for anything they might need while in high school.

“My focus is on making sure that my kids get what they need. One of my goals is to boost confidence for kids in math and show them that they can do it even if it might take a little more work,” said Thorn.

Teaching and learning in the pandemic has been tough for everyone. But Thorn has encouraging words for students who may be struggling, now or at any time.

“Focus on the good and to do what you love,” said Thorn. “You never know what’s going to be in the future, but as long as you’re enjoying what you can at the moment then you should be good.”

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