Q & A with Ms. MacDonald

Shukri Abdirahman

If you are looking for a high energy, and fun teacher who is also a mother, sister, and a friend, look no further than East High’s favorite Spanish teacher, Kristin MacDonald.

Ms. MacDonald is one of the Spanish teachers at East High. It was not part of MacDonald’s plan to become a Spanish teacher. After high school, she started at the University of Rochester in New York. Her intended major was genetic engineering. She also went to the University of Maine and got her Master’s degree in teaching history. There was a shortage of Spanish teachers, and MacDonald knew enough Spanish to be able to teach it. She also focused on International Affairs and got a degree in economics. She got both her Bachelor’s and Master’s degree at the University of Maine.

“I don’t have a degree in teaching Spanish, but I have a degree in teaching,” Teacher Kristin MacDonald said.

Ms. MacDonald has been a teacher at East for the past 4 years. She came at the beginning of the semester in 2017. She has been to three schools and East students are by far her favorite. She loves the diversity and the strength of the East High community when they come together. Over the years she has noticed how East students defend each other fiercely in and outside of the building, and how it is filled with wonderful experiences.

“Clearly my favorite part about East are my students,” MacDonald said.

Family is very important to MacDonald. She spends her free time with her kids, her boyfriend, and his son. She has a 12 year old daughter named Lucy who loves to skate. Her sons name is Jamie, he is nine years old. She likes to read, crochet, and ride her bike. She also has a younger brother in Japan who is in the military. She loves to do activities with her kids. Before Covid-19 she would go swimming, bike riding, and take them to the orchard.

“I don’t like to sit at home, I like to be doing something that is outside of the house, and Covid is making me crazy because that’s not an option,” MacDonald said.

Taelyn Fisher is one of Ms. MacDonald’s Spanish III students. She met Ms. Macdonald when she was a freshman. She had her as a substitute teacher for her Spanish class. She didn’t really know Ms. MacDonald back then. She then had her as her Spanish II teacher sophomore year, and that’s when they got close and grew a strong bond.

“I would describe Ms. MacDonald as a very fun and goofy person, who is always wanting to make others smile,” junior Taelyn Fisher said.

Rose Batungwanayo is a junior at East High as well. She has known Ms. MacDonald since the second semester of her freshman year. She really likes MacDonald’s teaching techniques because she likes to put sarcasm and humor into things, which makes her class not boring. For Rose, Spanish class was the only class she looked forward to because the teacher and class was fun.

“I’d like to think that we are close… She is definitely that one teacher that you can talk to about anything and she’ll understand…. I just love her,” junior Rose Batungwanayo said.

MacDonald would really love to go back to school in person. She is one of those teachers who does a lot of group activities with her students. She would rather the school not go back and forth between hybrid and virtual learning. She has gotten used to managing classes online and working from home. She prefers in person learning for sure, but she knows that the safer choice is virtual learning. She is nervous about coming back to the building because she cares for the safety of her students and her family.

“I would describe Ms. MacDonald as a thoughtful and caring person, and a great teacher,” Batungwanayo said.