For our second ‘Meet The Teacher’ interview this academic year, we sit down with the Deputy Head at the Junior School, Joanna Dudley. In this short but personal interview, we got to know Joanna better, learned what she likes the most about working at Eltham College and found out something not many people know about her, which is very impressive:
- Where did you work before Eltham College?
Before joining Eltham College, I was the overall Director of an Arts organisation in California, USA. Prior to that, I was Deputy Head at Blackheath High junior school.
- What do you like most about working here? The multifaceted nature of my job; one minute I’m out on the sports fields teaching netball, the next I’m in my office working on timetables or I’m up to my elbows in paint or clay in the Art room. No two days are ever alike, and every day brings its own challenges.
- What are you looking forward to this academic year with the students? One of my annual highlights is joining the year 3’s on their residential school journey in the summer term. For many of our youngest students this is often the first time they have ever been away from home, and it’s a highlight that they talk about all the way through the junior school and beyond.
- Share a funny story from your time at Eltham. I will never forget my first day at work here as it coincided with the first day of lockdown in 2020. My laptop had been delivered in a plastic bag at the end of my front garden and marked the most unusual beginning to a new school. I remember feeling so nervous to teach my first virtual lesson, but the children in my new class were so happy and enthusiastic that all my apprehension just melted away
- If you could switch lives with one person for a day, who would it be and why? It would have to be a pilot! Ever since I was little, I wanted to fly a plane but alas my terrible eyesight has meant this dream will never become a reality.
- What’s one thing students and staff might not know about you? In addition to my teaching qualification, I also trained as a classical soprano and have sung in choirs and as a soloist all my life. My two musical highlights have been singing with Emma Kirkby and performing a live broadcast on BBC Radio 4. This year I am spending more time in St Paul’s Cathedral as my own two sons have begun theirmusical lives there as choristers. Teaching children to sing has been one of the greatest joys of my life and I hope to continue to inspire as many children as possible to join a choir…everyone should sing!