About Carol Ann
Carol Ann is a caring, experienced, and curious educator. She has taught all subjects in a variety of environments, from traditional classroom to one-on-one setups. In every case, she has worked alongside each student to guide, support, listen, and challenge their individual cognitive development.
In addition, she was drawn to movement and music from early on. She taught creative music and dance in public schools, churches, and homes, as a contracted guest artist. These experiences have also allowed her to transfer the benefits of weaving together flexibility and discipline into her teaching across the curriculum.
As a child, Carol Ann lived in Los Angeles. Her father co-owned A&A Used Cars, walking distance from home. By her fourth grade, the family moved to Garden Grove, CA. In high school, Carol Ann was varsity head cheer leader for two years. At the end of senior year, she was voted by faculty as “Most Worthy Argonaut” and most likely to succeed for her graduating class of 1969.
During her early years, Carol Ann found herself drawn to Scripture applying Christ’s teachings to her own life. By high school she was involved in YIPE, Youth in Presbyterian Events, and served as the youth group guitarist, song leader, and program leader in the Garden Grove Presbyterian Church. She was selected as a youth ambassador with YFU, Youth for Understanding, and spent a year in Denmark as a foreign exchange student. In college, “CA” (as she calls herself) took a folk-dance class and things started to make sense. It was the multicultural musical-dance circle where Carol Ann found meaning and peace.
Education & Teaching
Carol attended California State University(CSU) in Chico and earned a Bachelor of Arts in Physical Education, with an emphasis in Dance and Aquatics. She followed her natural inclination and embarked on a journey to explore dance therapy methodology and theory. She spent a summer at the San Francisco Aikido Institute studying Feldenkrais Movement Awareness Technique. Because Anna Halprin incorporated Feldenkrais technique in morning movement ritual, Carol Ann joined the San Francisco Dancer’s Workshop (holistic solo and community movement) and went on to study Joan Skinner’s Releasing Technique in Seattle, WA. CA ran her own swim school, started Aerobic Dance at Butte College, and became the recreation director for a large community development, Paradise Pines. While working on her Master’s degree (1982-1983) she co-taught Interrelated Arts, a required course in the Elementary Teaching Credential Program CSU Chico.
By 1983, Carol Ann earned her Master’s Degree in Interrelated Arts and wrote a book entitled A Creative Journey into A Holistic Approach to Dance. Carol received a full scholarship at John F. Kennedy University, Orinda, CA, in Clinical Psychology, MFCC with an emphasis in Dance Therapy. For personal reasons, Carol stepped out of clinical psychology and entered the credential program at CSU San Francisco where she earned a Single Subject Credential in PE. She completed her internship with San Ardo Union School District (k-8), South Monterey County. She taught music, drama, dance and aquatics. Over the next 10 years, she combined Orff Schulwerk methodology (UC Santa Cruz Orff Schulwerk Level I, II and III) and dance therapy theory and practice doing consultant work for several Salinas Valley public schools. She taught creative music and dance and improvisation-inspired choreography for the Presbyterian Church in Salinas, CA. She also did consultant work in creative movement/dance/song for several districts in Salinas. A deeply memorable teaching job, was a long-term substitute position with inmates at Soledad Correctional Facility.
In 1988, Carol Ann embarked on a new journey. Salinas Union High School District hired her as the Home Study teacher for the Teen Pregnancy and Parenting Home Study pilot program which was funded by California lottery money. During Carol Ann’s years with the program, enrollment grew from 10 to over 50 students, thus keeping students at risk of drop-out in school.
She worked in one-on-one home settings for ten years until her daughter, Meja Hannah, was 10 years old, at which time Ms. Aldrich transferred to the academic classroom. With great enthusiasm and creativity Carol Ann developed a learning environment for herself and her students. She worked side-by-side with her students and often developed a supportive relationship with their parents. Aldrich set high expectations and reached for metacognition in every one-on-one session. Students were expected to complete course work, return to the comprehensive school, enroll at Hartnell College, take classes at the Regional Occupational Program, pass the California High School Exit Exam (Cahsee) and complete all required credits to graduate from high school.
During her years with the district, she took the following Monterey County Office of Education courses: The Writing Process, Deconstructing Written Material, Deconstructing a Writing Prompt, Writing with a Specific Purpose (Descriptive, Narrative, Persuasive, Reflective, Response to Literature, Extended Paragraph, Summary etc.) Vocabulary Development, Foldables, Shared Reading Inquiry, Decoding and Spelling Strategies and Active Reading Strategies. She participated in a year long Asian Studies course. She has attended California Health, Physical Education, Recreation and Dance state conferences, Common Core Math 7th grade and more. Carol retired from SUHSD on December 1st, 2013 after 25 years of teaching. Now, she chooses to continue to serve students and their families as a home tutor, special educational projects co-ordinator and substitute teacher.
A Little Extra
Carol has completed two of three years of internship with the Sacramento, CA Bread of Life, Spirit and the Arts Program in Spiritual Direction. She plans to complete the formation process and graduate May 2017. She is currently attending Calvary Church, Monterey CA.
Carol Ann is an Alto II sectional member of Aria Women’s Chorus of Monterey directed by Sean Boulvare.
On a final note, Ms. Aldrich is a Tanguera, an advanced/intermediate lead/follow Argentine Tango dancer. Connection with others is like connection in tango. Joy, the deeper ride, comes through body, mind, spirit with Self and others.
In conclusion, it’s Carol Ann’s nature to observe, reflect, wait, contemplate, creatively explore, facilitate learning, and challenge herself and others to move towards the best possible outcome. Carol has always valued “The Journey”.