We are delighted to share that Natalie Pearce of Beechboro Christian School was announced the Japanese Language Teachers' Association WA (JLTAWA) Japanese Teacher of the Year 2016 Award winner.
"I had the privilege of growing up with a mum who could speak, and taught five different languages," said Natalie.
"We often had Japanese exchange students and exchange teachers staying with us for extended periods of time while I was growing up.
"I started learning Japanese in Year 6 at Kalamunda Christian School and followed this with five years of Japanese at Swan Christian College where Mariel Howard - winner of the same prestigious award in 2012 - was a positive influence by taking me to Japan on exchange for a month at the end of Yr 11," Natalie said.
Natalie has since been teaching Japanese for 12 years. We are blessed to have Natalie in the SCEA family as she is an expert on early languages learning (k-2) and her unique play-based, language-rich activities and ideas are being used widely by teachers of all languages. She has presented at national and state languages conferences in Australia and New Zealand.
While employed by SCASA (School Curriculum and Standards Authority) for the first six months of 2016, she was heavily involved writing the new WA curriculum for Japanese. For the past three years, she has also lectured in languages pedagogies at Curtin University. She is regularly asked to present at other states and works together with other early learning languages experts Australia-wide.
"The parents are so supportive of their children learning Japanese and the students are so enthusiastic, it really is a pleasure to teach at Beechboro Christian School," Natalie said.