Dabbert finds her home at Riley


Alli Glen, Staff Writer


A newer face at Riley Elementary School has already proven to be a dedicated, inspiring, and patient educator.

Mrs. Dabbert is in her second year at Riley, and she has quickly become an irreplaceable piece of the Rocket family. Her first year was spent teaching kindergarten, and she moved up two grade levels in August spending her second year with the second graders. It has been a long road for Dabbert, but she is excited to finally be doing what she loves the most: teaching.

Dabbert is originally from Illinois, and her family moved to New Buffalo, Michigan, when she was five years old. Shortly after settling in New Buffalo, Dabbert moved to Michigan City, Indiana.

She attended Marquette High School and after she graduated high school, she went to Purdue North Central where she pursued her Business Degree with a minor in Marketing.

After years as a stay-at-home-mom, Dabbert worked in the medical field with patients who were struggling with quitting smoking. She enjoyed it, but in her heart she knew she wanted to teach.

A few years later, she ended up transitioning to a teaching degree at Indiana Wesleyan University.

For her student teaching portion of college, Dabbert taught at Kingsbury Elementary School in a fifth grade classroom. She admits that it was intimidating walking into a classroom with authority for the first time, but she acquainted herself with the students, and they ended up loving her.

“I remember at the end of my time with them, they threw me a surprise going away party,” Dabbert said. “I received gifts but even more special were the notes that all the kids wrote me. I have them tucked away in a special box to keep forever!”

After student teaching, it reassured Dabbert even more that it was the career for her.

She slowly transitioned her way into having her very own classroom. Dabbert started her teaching career by assisting second grade students at Riley for a year. She also decided to be a long-term substitute teacher for kindergarten and second grade, and her last adventure before being an classroom teacher was being a literacy coach for another year.

When she received the news that she finally achieved her dream– being a teacher at Riley– she was overjoyed with emotion. She had previously worked with students often, but she finally has the opportunity to be the main person in charge.

Dabbert’s first year teaching was spent teaching kindergarten. After spending one year in the kindergarten classroom, she decided to move up and teach second grade. To her, it doesn’t matter what grade she teaches, as long as she’s teaching.

“I love seeing that moment where what I am teaching starts ‘clicking,’ and I absolutely love being a positive influence in my students’ lives,” Dabbert said.

Not only does she have the opportunity to do the one thing she loves most everyday, but the Riley staff and students have made her feel special since day one.

“From the moment I walked into Riley, I felt welcomed by everyone in the building. I love the teachers and the students!” Dabbert said.

Her first two years in her own classroom have been magnificent. She loves having the chance to teach and bond with students everyday.

It is clear that Dabbert knows how to have fun in the classroom, and she continues to have the same enjoyment of life outside of school.

Dabbert has always been a family woman. Whenever she is not in the classroom, she’s always looking for time to spend with her family. Another hobby that Dabbert enjoys is decorating. In her down time, she likes to scroll through Pinterest looking for new decorating ideas, and she also finds it fun to learn new recipes.

She enjoys learning new things everyday, and it surely happens often in the classroom and outside of school.

It’s certain that teaching was made for Dabbert, and Dabbert was made for teaching.