Degrees and Certifications:

Ms. Ann Olsen

My name is Ann Olsen and I am a Kindergarten Ai teacher this school year at Greendale Elementary. This is my second-year teaching in Aiken Schools; but last year my position was in the Early Learning Department.  Honestly, I do not want to bore you with the details of my life….and I do tend to talk a lot!  Although, to be fair, my past experiences are what shaped me into the person and educator that I am today and give insight into what I value and hold dear.  

  • I graduated many moons ago from Miami University with a BS in Elementary Education. This was during the time when elementary education was considered all subjects from the first grade through the eighth grade, so my teaching license was for grades 1 to 8.   
  • My first teaching job was in Charleston, South Carolina. I was the sixth grade “over age” teacher, meaning that the sixth graders in my class had repeated a grade level two or more times.  I was young, naïve and desperately wanted to positively impact the lives of the children that I came in contact with.  Reflecting back upon that experience, I see how unprepared I was for that position, how unequip I was to handle the baggage that my students carried with them daily and how uneducated I was in the area of diversity.  Sadly, those kids probably taught me much more than I taught them.
  • After my first year of teaching, I moved to Cleveland, Ohio and married my college beau. Although we are no longer together, we did bring two wonderful boys into the world.  These boys are practically men now (and I am left wondering where all those years went!!). My oldest, Matthew, is twenty -one and goes to Brock University which is in Canada (where my ex lives now).  James, my nineteen-year-old, just started at the University of Northern Ohio and plans to work with cars, specifically fast cars, when he graduates.
  • Before I had my own children, I spent seven years teaching many middle school students in two different states and at a variety of grade levels.
  • When Matt was in first grade and James was in Pre-K, I re-entered the work force, but this time around I chose the preschool setting. I taught at the Aurora Co-op for 5 years in the 2’s and 3’s class. My sixth year, I became the Director and taught the 4’s and Pre-K Class.  I spent a total of ten wonderful years at the little brown school.  During that time, I was able to bring the Co-op up to a 5-star school, the highest quality rating in Ohio, implement a strong social/emotional component to our curriculum and added parent education nights to our calendar.  
  • Knowing a single mom could not survive on the salary of a non-profit preschool director and teacher, I left the Co-op and entered graduate school at Kent State University in May of 2017. I knew I wanted to be a teacher since I was in the first grade, however after my years at the Co-op, I had a passion to advocate for the importance of quality early learning experiences and the necessity of early learning environments to include the teaching of social/emotional skills. Graduate school gave me numerous resources, skills and the confidence to make my passion a career.
  • I graduated in May of 2019 and started to look for a job, which brings us to today.
  • Why Aiken? .... My family lives here. My parents have lived in Aiken for many years.  My sister lives here also.  Some of you might even know her since she is employed by the district as well.  She is a special education preschool teacher at Millbrook.   (She always wants me to inform others that she is the younger sister.)
  • I have been a teacher for many years, but I have never been an On-line Teacher, so this will be a brand-new experience for me. To say that I am nervous would be an understatement.  However, I am looking forward to working with the Learning Coaches at each household as we navigate through this school year. 
  • 3 random facts about me: 1) I love all things pink.  2) I openly admit that driving and directions are not my strength.  “Recalculating” is my navigation system’s favorite saying.   3) I am a continuous work in progress.  I still love learning and every day I try to be the best person that I can be.  (Some days that is a lot easier than others!). However, I am still a human and often make mistakes, so your patience and understanding are always appreciated.