Behind the Mask: Staff Spotlight: Mrs. Wakeley

Cherokee High School has many creative and clever teachers. This week we are focusing on Chemistry teacher, Mrs. Wakeley, who has been teaching for years nine years, six at Cherokee.

Mrs. Wakeley is the best and she is definitely my favorite teacher.

Mason Warington, Sophomore

I really like Mrs. Wakeley she is very nice, chill, and it makes me feel relaxed in her class, which is rare.

Ella Sauls, Sopomore

Ms. Wakeley gladly answered a few questions on her teaching experience here at CHS.

Because of Covid-19, Cherokee High School offers digital learning for students that prefer to stay home during the pandemic. While teaching in person, Mrs, Wakeley also taught digital learning first semester.

Do you prefer being a digital learning teacher more than in person?

Digital is always harder because you don’t have that face to face connection with your students, so it can be more difficult to support all of their needs. It was challenging, but as we adapted and figured out how to communicate the its the same. Though I do enjoy the face to face connection.

At Cherokee Mrs. Wakeley has not only been a chemistry teacher but also Instructional Lead Strategist, which is a vital support position for staff to aid in implementing instruction strategy training, attending and leading subject-area planning committees, and evaluating student data.

Why did you start teaching?

I was a chemistry major at Georgia Southern and got really involved in college. I realized I could help people understand and appreciate a subject most people put into “that’s just a really hard subject category.”

Do you think you learn as much from the students as they learn from you?

Absolutely! I’m learning from my students all the time. Not only about life in general and the things they’re dealing with, but you become better at understanding the content that you teach by making it accessible to other students, and having to break it down to different levels.

What is a Instructional Lead Strategist?

An Instructional Lead Strategist is a coach for the teachers. So instead of teaching students they are a support role from teachers in a class room. They are there to support, model, and co-plan any new strategies teachers may come up with. With the pandemic that was a really important role.

Do you prefer that over teaching?

As a teacher you love sharing your content with students and inspiring them to move forward with the content. I missed having that connection with the students. Even though coaching teachers you’re still impacting students, you don’t have that one on one connection.

Mrs. Wakeley touches hundreds of students lives and makes the difficult subject of chemistry seem conquerable. CHS is very thankful to have such an incredible and reliable teacher. 

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