Jennifer McGarvey

Name: Jennifer McGarvey

Hometown: Newton, MA

Position: Special Education Teacher in Room 103

Educational Background: Undergraduate Degree from Lesley University in Developmental Psychology. Double Masters from Lesley University in Special Education Pre-K through 9th grade and Early Childhood Pre-K through 3rd grade.

Years at the NECP: This is my 25th year.

What do you love most about working with the children at the NECP? I love the excitement and the wonder of each new day. Watching the children discover how to do new things and make connections is amazing. The underlying core of my curriculum is building strong social-emotional skills. I want every child to feel safe, proud and loved, and to foster those feelings with their peers. Every member of our class, (child and adult) has unique experiences, skills and gifts to share and we celebrate everything big and small.

What's a typical day for a social worker at the NECP? A typical day is filled with lots of laughing and running around. I am always trying to stay 1 step ahead of the kids in terms of time management so that activities flow and we stay on schedule. I am also constantly analyzing kids behaviors and responses to the activities and stimuli in the environment so I can head off any behaviors with positive reinforcement. Each day brings new wonderment as the kids grow, develop and discover new connections. The look of joy or wonder on a child's face is the most precious and rewarding gift. A typical day is also filled with lots of hugs from the kids.

What do you feel makes the NECP unique? This is such a unique place because of the joy and happiness. Even the toughest day can be completely reversed by a child's giggle or the feel of a small hand slip into mine. NECP fosters community, love and high expectations for every student every moment of every day. It is a magical place to work.

What are your hobbies and other interests? Going to Disney with my husband and my 4 girls (aged 10, 12, 14 and 15). I also love developing new curriculum, sewing and scrapbooking.

What did you want to be when you grew up? I have wanted to be a teacher ever since I was 8 years old!

What's something that's on your bucket list? I would like to drive across the country in the RV we bought last Spring.