Wednesday, July 31, 2019

By Jess Hawkins

It’s our favorite time of the week again, “Where Do You Work?” Wednesday! This week we are excited to introduce alumna Abbie Jensen.

A native of Iowa City, Jensen graduated from the University of Iowa in 2001 with a B.A. in Communications before returning to the UI College of Education to get her teaching certification in 2005. She is certified to teach Elementary Education, K-6 Reading, K-8 Spanish, and K-12 English as a Second Language (ESL) and English Learning Language (ELL).

At the University of Iowa, Jensen took classes in Second Language Learning.

“The classes I took really prepared me for working with language learners,” she says. “I felt I had a strong foundation and knew how to proceed in the classroom.”

Jensen has been teaching ELL for 13 years and moved to the Iowa City Community School District in 2007.

“The most rewarding part of my job is watching newcomers come to Iowa, and within a year, they are learning English and making friends,” Jensen says. “I love to look back at those first few weeks and months and remind newcomers of how far they have come since starting school here. It's pretty amazing.”

Jensen’s favorite part of her job as an ELL teacher is the opportunity to learn about other cultures.

“As an ELL teacher, I feel like a world traveler without leaving Iowa. I get to know students and families from all around the world” she says. “The cultures I've learned about and the relationships with the ELL families have enriched my life.”

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