We Are Crew, Not Passengers!

Denise Gusinde

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About Me

What inspired you to get into the field of education?: 

Ever since I can remember I have loved spending time with children.  They inspire me in so many ways and I knew that whatever I would do with my life it would have to include children!  I have also always loved bugs, reptiles, paint, music, and books, so if I could include those as well I’d have the career of my dreams!  I attended high school in Germany and didn’t enjoy it very much, so becoming a teacher wasn’t really anywhere in my plans until I moved back to the USA after my graduation.  I volunteered in a kindergarten classroom and I discovered that there were children, bugs, reptiles, paint, music, and books, and a whole lot more!  I immediately began my journey toward becoming an elementary school teacher.  Meanwhile life happened and took me on a few detours.  I finally ended up earning my teaching degree 20 years later and it turns out that teaching 5, 6, and 7 year olds truly is the career of my dreams!  

What’s the most rewarding part of your job?: 

The most rewarding part of my job is being able to spend time with children who remind me every day about the important things in life.  They inspire me with their inquisitive minds, creative thinking, and ability to laugh about little things.  I love to watch the children learn how to read and grow into independent, confident little people.  I love science, art, music, poetry, music, books, and learning, and feel lucky to be able to have a job which allows me to share all of these interests with the children and continue to grow and learn right along with them every day.  

General background information (years in education, degree(s), Universities/Colleges attended): 

Although I began pursuing my goal of becoming a teacher right after high school, my life led me in several different directions before I received my Masters of Education from Regis University in 2002.  I have been teaching in Poudre School District ever since then.  I found my "home away from home" here at Polaris in 2003 and have taught different combinations of Kindergarten, first, and second grade here.  From 2009 to 2011 I had the opportunity to teach in a bilingual kindergarten classroom for 2 years in Berlin at John F. Kennedy School, a PSD partner school. 


I keep myself busy doing many different things such as house remodeling projects, exercising, knitting, water coloring, playing guitar and piano, discovering bugs, rocks, and other curious things from outside, learning, researching, and reading.  I love to spend time with my family and my friends.   One of my favorite things to do is spending time with my grandchildren.   I like to spend time outside hiking, riding my bike, or going for walks.  In addition I am pretty good at following the motto:  “How beautiful it is to do nothing and rest afterwards!”

Thought Provoking Quote: 

“It is more fun to talk with someone who doesn’t use long difficult words but rather short easy words like “What about lunch?”  A.A. Milne - Winnie the Pooh 

My Classroom

About My Classroom: 

I provide a classroom environment with sufficient freedom and many choices to allow students to become independent. I strongly believe in encouraging children to make their own choices and to take ownership of their decisions.  I like to help children understand that mistakes can be our best opportunities to learn and grow.  Critical thinking and inquiry are central and evident in our room.  I make every effort to make learning meaningful and to help children make connections to real life situations.  We love to sing, play, laugh and have fun as we grow and learn together each day! 

PSD does not unlawfully discriminate on the basis of race, color, creed, religion, national origin, ancestry, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, marital status, veteran status, age or disability in access or admission to, or treatment or employment in, its programs or activities. A lack of English speaking skills will not be a barrier to admission or participation.