Kind and wise educators are one of the most important elements in a student’s life. Perhaps one of the brightest of all is Portage resident Jamie Gore, the pre-kindergarten teacher at Nativity of Our Savior Catholic School. Gore is well known for being an outstanding educator and for how she works with all her students.
“My motto is ‘gentle faces, gentle eyes, and gentle voices,’” Gore said. “This personifies the learning experience the students in my class have.”
Years ago, Gore was a Marketing and Public Relations Coordinator for the McDonald’s Corporation. From there, she became an entrepreneur and owned and operated three separate Subway restaurants. She even developed a scholarship project for the students who worked in her restaurants, which helped pay for their textbooks and other scholarly materials.
“I’ve always liked the ‘people’ aspect of working in these jobs,” Gore said. “This sense of working with others and helping them build themselves and their futures would help me move into my teaching position.”
Sometime after selling her restaurants, Gore was offered a chance to work with her local YMCA’s pre-school program because of her energy and positive attitude. Later, she was approached by Nativity of Our Savior Catholic School’s Father Corona and former Principal Kemberly Markham and asked if she would be interested in beginning their very first pre-school program. Gore gladly accepted it.
“It started relatively small but grew into a fully-fledged five day program, in order to meet the needs of our community and our families,” Gore said.
Gore described her teaching style and classroom atmosphere as “learning through play.” She goes through all of the typical pre-school elements like letters, numbers, colors, shapes, and social skills, while making the lessons interactive and fun. Art and music are the two major subjects she likes to develop her entire curriculum around.
“Singing, music, and developing the senses is important for emerging students,” Gore said. “Other activities like painting and working with clay foster strong cognitive skills.”
Gore states that her true goal as an educator is “to make students fall in love with school.” Thus, she revolves her entire teaching mindset and attitude around this.
“I make sure that every day is a great day for them,” Gore said. “These students deserve a quality education experience that they actually love.”
During the pandemic, Gore would make art packets for her students and leave them on their porches, as well as constantly having Zoom meetings, in order to maintain the hands-on approach of her class environment.
“I wanted to keep that connection with my students,” Gore said. “No matter the circumstances, you still have the power to make an impact on someone’s day.”
“I really feel being a teacher is my true calling and what my role in this world was always meant to be,” Gore said. “A place like Nativity of Our Savior Catholic School really brings out the best in me.”