Mount Monday-Kristen Zosche, Director of Curriculum and Instruction and English Teacher
This week’s staff profile features Kristen Zosche, M.A., our Director of Curriculum and Instruction and English Teacher at Mount St. Dominic Academy. She appreciates the community of students and faculty at MSDA who take great pride in one another as a family of learners. Ms. Zosche shares that as a teacher, there is nothing more rewarding than being in the classroom and witnessing students learning.
MSDA Faculty Profile
Kristen Zosche states that Mount St. Dominic Academy is a really special place to work. The Mount is such a motivated and supportive community of students and faculty. There is great pride taken in one another as a family of learners. Every day Ms. Zosche is inspired by the confidence and strength of MSDA girls and appreciates that the faculty culture is one of trust and mutual respect.
Teaching is Ms. Zosche’s favorite part of the job. She points out that she knows this seems obvious! But much of a teacher’s time is spent planning and, especially for teachers in the humanities, providing feedback on essays. To Ms. Zosche, nothing is more rewarding than being in the classroom and witnessing students learning. It is a work-environment filled with laughter, creativity, engaging dialogue, and shared passions.
The most challenging part of teaching is working within the constraints of a 24-hour day! Ms. Zosche has never been the type of teacher to teach the same lessons and read the same selections year after year; she always wants to keep it interesting for both herself and her students, which takes time. As the Mount’s Director of Curriculum and Instruction, much of her time is also spent conducting research and working with the curriculum committee to make sure that the Mount keeps abreast of educational trends and continuously evolves programming to ensure the best possible education for students.
Fascinated by the written word
Ms. Zosche always knew she wanted to write. From a very young age, she was fascinated by the written word and the art of storytelling. Early in her professional life, she thought this passion would manifest itself as a career in journalism; however, her graduate work in English studies evolved into research in writing studies, which included an additional focus on the teaching of writing. She feels she is so lucky that she found a way to combine her personal intellectual pursuits with the needs of her students, and that she gets to share her interests in such meaningful ways.
When asked to provide advice for current students? “Don’t lose focus, but take time for yourself. Academic endeavors can be very fulfilling, but it is so important to have a school-life balance.” Ms. Zosche reminds students to take time each week to do something that they enjoy, whatever that might be. It will lead into the next week feeling energized and ready for the demands of intensive study.
Stress relief, meditation, exercise, and the ‘travel bug’
It’s no secret that Ms. Zosche spends a lot of time running! The Cross Country Coach says that it’s her preferred form of stress relief, meditation, and exercise all in one. She also caught the travel bug after a trip abroad this summer, so she and her sister recently made a pact to use running as an excuse for traveling new places together. In September, the sisters ran a half marathon in the Finger Lakes region of New York and are in the process of brainstorming their next getaway.
Combining guilty pleasures and literary fiction
She is almost embarrassed to admit this as someone who has studied English for the better part of the last 15 years, but since she finished her most recent degree, she has been really into books that are more “guilty pleasures” than “literary fiction.” She just finished When Life Gives You Lululemons by Lauren Weisberger, and her current read is Something in the Water by Catherine Steadman. If she could be anywhere in the world right now, Ms. Zosche doesn’t hesitate. She would be on a beach, preferably a European one. She’s particularly thinking of the Italian Riviera, but the Caribbean also sounds just as transformative! The beach has been her happy place for as long as she can remember. There’s something about the mixture of sun and salt that lets her escape from reality—a rejuvenating interlude.
She watched Dunkirk and The Darkest Hour back-to-back, and she feels it is the double-feature you never knew you needed. While both films portray the same turbulent period of British history, they complement one another thanks to a drastic difference in perspective. The former brings audiences onto the frontlines and the latter brings them into the bowels of Churchill’s war rooms. If historical drama isn’t your forte, Ms. Zosche recommends The Greatest Showman — it’s nothing short of magical. But then again, she’s a sucker for musicals! She used to watch Rodgers & Hammerstein’s State Fair on VHS over, and over, and over!