45: Bonus Edition- Interview with Katie Helms


Katie is a second year elementary ESL [English as a Second Language] teacher. She currently works in Charlotte, NC but is originally from Illinois. Due to student allotment numbers tied to funding and student need, Katie has moved schools each year she has taught and has already been told she will be relocated in the district to help a different school with an expanding ESL population next year- that equals 3 schools in 3 years. She loves teaching ESL and making relationships with her students for years to come!


  • Each child is different and unique and learns at their own pace
  • It’s a marathon, not a sprint
  • They are children, not adults
  • Relate to the kids and build relationships- building a classroom culture is huge
  • I celebrate mistakes
  • Practice makes perfect
  • I can’t control what [other teachers] do, but I can control what happens in my classroom
  • No Chalk Talk policy with friends
  • Listen to your gut
  • It goes back to the kids… we are paid in hugs!


Katie’s Stamp of Approval

Connect with Katie

  • Email: katieshelms@gmail.com
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Connect with Gretchen


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About the author, Gretchen

I am an educator of almost a decade, passionate about cultivating talent in aspiring and new teachers through practical tips and strategies. My blog, book, and podcast are geared towards empowering teachers to enter the profession and stay there due to the advice and encouragement I provide. We have a real need in our nation for strong leaders in classrooms, and I believe its my calling and duty to coach teachers to achieve and maintain best teaching practices in order to drive the growth and success of our students in and outside the classroom.