By Sophia Cheng
If you have been paying attention recently, you may have noticed the addition of a new teacher roaming the Pinewood halls: Ms. Johnson.
Drama teacher Betsy Johnson is acting as a substitute for drama teacher Katie Linza while the latter is on maternity leave for the next few months, and Johnson already knows her favorite part of Pinewood after just a couple weeks at the school.
“I am constantly amazed at all of the opportunities for the students here. When I sat with the a cappella group and also when I taught the music theory class—I think that was when I was like, ‘Wow, I really wish I had these teachers and peers and tools to learn from and interact with when I was in school!’ It all really blew me away. Especially in the theatre department—students can basically pursue anything they want.”
Johnson has quickly fit into the Pinewood environment after only a couple weeks and come to feel honored and excited to work at Pinewood until Linza returns. One of the teachers who Ms. Johnson is working with closely is her son’s former performing arts teacher Doug Eivers. Although they have only been colleagues for a short while, he already has a lot to say about her.
“I really enjoyed listening to her talk with the prospective parents at [the Upper Campus] Open House. I have been here for 19 years, and that’s a lot of open houses, so it was refreshing to hear her perspective on things as a new teacher and a parent. She was engaging and sincere and very entertaining in her approach. It is always nice to get a new perspective on things, and I look forward to what she will bring to the department moving forward.”
Pinewood’s newest addition to the faculty also has something special she wants to bring to the arts program.
“The main thing I would want to bring to each class is a hope that each and every kid, whether they are the star of the show or a backup dancer, can realize the potential that he or she has in them, and maybe find a little joy in their day from whatever music or theatre-related class they’re taking,” said Johnson.