Teacher Feature: Mrs. Harris

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Sophia Lowrie

Pictured, Mrs. Harris.

A new classroom covered with soft-lit fairy lights has been added to Marco Island Academy’s third floor this year, and Mrs. Harris is its teacher.

 Mrs. Harris grew up in a small town located in eastern Kentucky in the heart of the Appalachian Mountains with her mom and dad. Her dad was a coal miner, and her mother was a stay-at-home mom. Family means the world to Mrs. Harris. She is married to the love of her life, Tony Harris, and they have four children, Emily, B.J., Tyler, and Kenzie, along with two Labradoodles, Teddy and Gatsby. They also have two grandchildren, Ella (2) and Reagan (1). They plan to welcome two granddaughters in February, five days apart.

Mrs. Harris earned her Bachelor’s in English and Journalism and a Master’s in English from Morehead State University in Kentucky. She decided to major in English instead of Education so she could teach college-level courses. Mrs. Harris spent ten years adjuncting English and literature classes at a local community college. 

She taught for twenty-one years in Louisville, Kentucky, before moving and teaching in Massachusetts and Tennessee. Mrs. Harris and her husband then relocated to Florida after their jobs transitioned online due to the pandemic. 

With two new openings in the MIA English department, Mrs. Harris went in for an interview with Principal Miss Scott. According to Mrs. Harris, Miss Scott’s “love and excitement” for the school were so contagious that she knew immediately that MIA was the school for her. Once she met the two other English teachers, Mr. Scalia and Mrs. Gutwerk, she was even more certain. They all share things in common and have similar philosophies on working with children. 

Mrs. Harris describes her teaching style as a “hybrid model.” She likes to actively direct her students to a task while allowing them to be the “primary doers and thinkers” in the classroom. She enjoys classroom discussions and believes that is what attracted her to teach literature. To Mrs. Harris, “there are endless opportunities for real-world talk.” 

Pullquote Photo

“there are endless opportunities for real-world talk.”

— Mrs. Harris

Outside of the classroom, Mrs. Harris enjoys reading, pilates, boating, fishing, and running. She and her husband love sports, especially New England sports; the Patriots, Red Sox, Celtics, and Bruins. She also loves spending time with her family, and her best friend, her mom. Unfortunately, her mom lives back home in Louisville, Kentucky, so she does not get to see her often, but they make sure to talk on the phone “every single morning and evening.” 

We are excited to welcome Mrs. Harris as a new school staff member at MIA and are confident that she is an excellent addition to our family. Go Rays!