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Pittsburgh Parenting Blog by Sewickley Academy

Sewickley Academy: Resource Blog for Parents

Q&A with SA's New Senior School Math Teacher Christy Fairman

9 Questions with Christy FairmanChristy arrives at Sewickley Academy after nine years of teaching boys at St. Paul’s School for Boys in Brooklandville, Maryland.  Earlier in her career, she taught girls at the St. Catherine’s School in Richmond, Virgina, teaching science as well as math. She is pleased to teach boys and girls together here as she joins the Senior School Math Department.

A graduate of Westminster College in New Wilmington, PA, with a B.A. in biology, Christy earned her M.A. in biology at the College of William and Mary, where she also served as a teaching assistant in the biology, zoology, and botany labs.  In addition, Christy engaged in ongoing professional development with the Student Global Leadership Institute and the Center for Spiritual and Ethical Education, as well as training in the International Baccalaureate in Math Studies and taking mathematics courses at the University of Richmond.

A three-sport coach of volleyball, basketball, and tennis, Christy was also the 2015 recipient of the Freeman Award for Teaching Excellence at St. Paul’s School for Boys.  She is excited to join the Mathematics Department here at Sewickley Academy this fall.

SA: Why did you choose to work at Sewickley Academy?

CF: Because they offered me a job! I was planning on moving to the Pittsburgh area for family, and I was looking for an independent school with a welcoming community. 

SA: What motivated you to become a teacher?

CF: I fell into it because it was sort of the family business. (My mom, dad, and grandparents were all teachers!). Also, it's mostly fun; it’s active. I always liked school and I like learning so working in a school seems like a no brainer.  

SA: What do you enjoy most about teaching? 

CF: Summer. Just kidding. I like that each day is different and the kids keep me on my toes.

SA: What is the most important life lesson you want your students to learn in your class(es)? 

Just stick to it. You might not like it now, but someday you’ll do math again and wonder what the big deal was. Just leave room to come back to later.  

SA: How do you keep current with the subject areas you cover?

CF: I follow various teacher blogs and websites. 

SA: What was your favorite book as a child?

CF: In lower school: "Liza Lou and the Yeller Belly Swamp;" in middle school: "The Hobbit;" and in high school: "Tess of the D’Urbervilles" or "Hemmingway: The Nick Adams Stories."  

SA: What is your favorite book as an adult?

CF: It's too hard to choose. I tend to read a lot and not really know what I’ve just read. I really liked "The Magicians" series by Lev Grossman and "Angle of Repose" by Wallace Stegner.

SA: What are some of your interests/hobbies? 

CF: I enjoy walking my dog, gardening, cooking, and yoga.


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Topics: Faculty