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Desiree H. Pointer Mace, Ph.D. Associate Dean School of Education Alverno College 3400 S. 43rd St.

., Milwaukee WI 53234 desiree.pointer-mace@alverno.edu 414-382-6345 LETTER OF REFERENCE: NATALIE PERRY To Whom it May Concern, I am very happy to be able to provide a professional reference for Natalie Perry. Ms. Perry would be an asset to any schools faculty and I recommend her highly and without reservation. Ms. Perry, an Early-Childhood/ Middle Childhood major with a Creative Arts support, is a consummate professional with deep knowledge of developmentally appropriate subject area content, highly creative disposition to integrate arts into education, innovative capacity to integrate technology in instruction, and a committed and sensitive colleague. She demonstrated exemplary service to our institution and her community. She modeled high expectations for herself and her students, and showed wonderful rapport with K-6th grade students. Ms. Perry positively embodied the Alverno honors focus and mission: her academic achievement was superlative, her community involvement was substantial and effective, and she is a natural leader who regularly inspires others toward attaining their own learning goals. Because of all these strengths, she graduated in December 2012 with honors. Ms. Perry is disposed to strive continuously toward excellence in all her work. I have known her well since her beginning education coursework, and in each course in which Ive taught her, she has truly distinguished herself not only through her uniformly excellent and creative work, but through her unflaggingly positive demeanor that elevates the quality of all of her collegial interactions, adults and children alike. Through faculty discussion of the Fall 2012 graduates, these observations were shared and seconded by all of my Education colleagues who have observed the same of her in their courses. The education faculty also affirm that Ms. Perry distinguished herself in her Alverno course and field work from very early on, and has continued to build and grow into an immensely talented student teacher. In her coursework, she strives for the very best in herself and elicits the same desire in others, supporting them to work toward their best. In her student teaching semester, on the basis of her strengths she was nominated for a student teaching internship, which she spent teaching 1st grade as an intern in the Greendale School District. She became actively involved in her school community well before the beginning of the school year, meeting parents, learning about students, and envisioning creative ways to use technology to bridge her students learning between home and school. As one example of this, she learned from many of her students parents that they were active users of social media, and so created a private twitter feed to share her classroom work throughout the day. On one day, this allowed students who had found a caterpillar during the school day to share video of the caterpillar being liberated back into the field with their parents. Her cooperating teacher, principal and school district leaders have shared their high regard for her teaching practice and
3400 SOUTH 43RD STREET P.O. BOX 343922 MILWAUKEE, WI 53234-3922 414-382-6000 FAX 414-382-6354

her distinctive capacity to diagnose learner needs and advocate for the appropriate level of cognitive demand for each child. Another example of her distinctive capacity to integrate arts into her instruction was a beautiful and seasonal bulletin board which on first glance appeared to be a class group of nicely rendered paper cut-out pumpkins; upon closer inspection, viewers learned that each child incorporated specific features (number of sides of the polygon pumpkin, e.g.) that would give clues to the artists identity. The interactive result engaged students, teachers, and parents in matching pumpkin to child by engaging in the same mathematical processes that had informed the bulletin boards creation. Ms. Perry contributes to the well-being of others on campus and off. She has been actively involved in Danceworks Mad Hot Ballroom program, which provides dance-based arts programming in schools and strives to empower children to develop artistic, academic and social skills. She has taught in the program for several years, providing lessons at six public and choice schools in Milwaukee. She has also been an active member of Alvernos student education organization (ASEO/ Alverno Student WEA), having contributed to initiatives to rejuvenate local schools, most recently helping clean up and plant new landscaping materials and create a courtyard reading sanctuary at Tippecanoe/ Dover Schools in Milwaukee. She regularly attends and contributes to community and civic events, such as a session on urban youth empowerment run by Alverno alumna Angela Dye and an event around the film Bully. At the latter event, Natalie used her superlative communication abilities in an interview with a local TV news program, describing how teachers can work for progress and advocate for their students. In her coursework, Natalie has extended this student advocacy to her Alverno colleagues, working very effectively in group settings to elevate the quality of everyones work. She is appreciated by other students and her thoughtful approach to her own work with students is mirrored by those with whom she collaborates. Unflaggingly positive, wonderful to work with, and holding herself to the high standards she knows students deserve of their teachers, Natalie Perry is a truly excellent candidate for the teaching profession. I recommend her very highly; please contact me if you have any questions or clarifications about her candidacy for a teaching position in your school or district. Warm regards,

Desiree H. Pointer Mace

3400 SOUTH 43RD STREET P.O. BOX 343922 MILWAUKEE, WI 53234-3922 414-382-6000 FAX 414-382-6354