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After graduating from Rutgers University in Camden, NJ with my Master’s degree in English, I taught at Williamstown Middle School for two years, and then at Livingston School in New Brunswick, NJ for three years. I worked with sixth through eighth grade students at these schools and learned the value of strong classroom management and differentiated instruction. While successful in my positions, I felt that there was even more that I could learn about being an effective teacher, as I never had the opportunity to student teach. Therefore, when I was offered an opportunity to shift to the New York City charter school system, I jumped at the chance. The three-week training program for Achievement First schools taught me more ways to manage my classroom and differentiate instruction, and also taught me how to create very effective lesson plans, the true value of purposeful assessments, and how to generate those. I even learned how to properly analyze my students’ results in order to determine which skills I needed to re-teach and which skills I simply needed to review. When I shifted to Bushwick Ascend Middle School, not only was I able to continue with my learning of how to become an even better teacher, but I was also given the opportunity to be a Grade Team Leader, where I evaluated other teachers’ lesson plans, and provided those teachers with feedback about their lesson plans and their actual lessons.

Due to personal reasons, I chose to remain closer to home and began working as an Adjunct Professor at local colleges. Working with college students for two years showed me that I truly wanted to be back in the classroom full-time. Therefore, I accepted a position at Columbia High School as a one-year leave replacement within the English department. I taught ninth and tenth grade English, where I focused on writing instruction and assisting the students in preparing for the PARCC exam. While I enjoyed teaching at Columbia High School, I found my place at Maria L. Varisco-Rogers Charter School in Newark, NJ teaching seventh and eighth grade Language Arts and Writing.

Joanna’s Qualifications

Education & Certification

Undergraduate Degree: University of Michigan-Ann Arbor - Bachelor in Arts, English and Political Science

Graduate Degree: Rutgers University-Camden - Master of Arts, English


Reading, crafts, working out, running

Tutoring Subjects

College English

College Essays

Comparative Literature


English Grammar and Syntax

Essay Editing

High School English





Spanish 1