Lisa Wilderman

Posted: November 13, 2019

I interviewed Lisa Wilderman learning more about her story and the importance of getting to know her students and some strategies she uses.

I try to be really intentional about getting to know students, even keeping track of things they share throughout the day.  I have a document that has a block for each student where I can quickly add notes when they share. I try to pull the things I learn into the lessons I teach and can tell when I do that it makes a difference.  The students are more connected to the learning because it relates to their lives.  As a seventh grade team, we build in many opportunities for kids to share about themselves, like our daily community time.  Students can sign up to share announcements, happenings in their lives, shout outs, concerns, or whatever else is on their mind.  They really take advantage of this opportunity and we see them taking ownership of our learning spaces as they bring up concerns and work through them together.

Tell me about your students.

At Odyssey, I have an opportunity to develop student relationships at a different level because of the time we have with students and the flexibility of our space and schedule.  I’m able to spend one-on-one time with students and really talk to them about their lives, their interests, their hopes and dreams.  We have such a creative group this year – in so many different ways.  One group of  about 17 students are so excited about filmmaking.  They’re using their lunch time to connect around making these fun, silly films that they show to the other students on our team during community time.  It’s really inspiring to see them in action.

Is there a specific student that comes to mind?

Rory is a new student to Odyssey and she is excited to be here. She started out pretty quiet and shy and has been opening up more and more each day.  Rory is really starting to feel a part of our 7th grade team and it shows.  She’s just ready to take on whatever comes her way and has such a positive approach.  It’s been fun watching her grow as a member of our team.

Rory shared, “What I like about Odyssey is how open and loose it is here compared to other schools. We can just be ourselves. I like how outside the box it is here.”

Framework Links:


  • What have you learned about your students so far and how has that helped you support their learning?
  • How do you support and help develop your students creativity?