Welcoming West’s New English Teacher: Daisy Kim

Courtesy+of+Mia+Kobayashi
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Welcoming West’s New English Teacher: Daisy Kim

Courtesy of Mia Kobayashi

Courtesy of Mia Kobayashi

Courtesy of Mia Kobayashi

Courtesy of Mia Kobayashi

Ashley Kim, Staff Writer

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Joining West High this year as an English teacher is Ms. Daisy Kim: a newcomer to our school, and Torrance, but not to teaching.  

   Teaching English 2 and 3 as well as the English sheltered class with English language learners, she explained, “I’ve been doing this for almost ten years now; so I’d like to think I have some experience.”

   Ms. Kim grew up in Orange County, currently lives in Los Angeles, and has worked in the Foothills previously.  In addition to high schoolers, she has taught some middle schoolers and students as young as 2nd and 3rd grade.  She commented, “If you asked me to choose a group that I enjoy the most, [it] would be high school. I feel like I connect with the students a lot better in high school.”

   Although Ms. Kim has never worked in Torrance before, she relates to the environment at West.  “I also went to a very competitive, academic high school, and so I do know what it’s like to be in a very competitive environment,” she said.  “So, knowing that, I think I can understand where some of the insecurities of some of the students can come from.”

   “I was the student that a lot of teachers commented that I need to work on my participation,” Ms. Kim added.  “I think that makes me understand some of the quieter students a little bit more.”

   She also expressed a love for everything about teaching English.  Ms. Kim studied English in college but considers herself to be both an avid reader and writer.  She discussed her passion for teaching writing in particular, saying, “I think everyone is a writer in some way or another…Whether it’s through creative writing [or] more of an analytical, expository writing, I want students to know that you can have a voice in anything that you do.”

   For Ms. Kim, her students are always at the forefront of her teaching.  Whether by encouraging collaboration with one another or by working with students to find their full potential, she approaches learning with a deep care for her students and a desire to understand each student: “I want students to remember that I’m someone who’s always here to help and to listen, and someone who is always willing to work with you…I also want to be remembered as a teacher who just cared; not just about how you do in English, but how you are doing in every aspect of your life.”

   She also discussed important parts of teaching, adding that “everyone has different needs and different modes of learning, and different ways they engage with learning.  So I think it’s very important for teachers to meet students where they’re starting from.”

   One of the things Ms. Kim is looking forward to is discovering a new community and learning about Torrance.  “I want to know where I can get the best pizza in Torrance,” she said. “I want to know where the best place to buy clothes [is].”  

   Finally, did you know that she plays Overwatch and watches Grey’s Anatomy?  There is so much more to learn about Ms. Kim: “If you ever want to come talk to me about anything I’ve mentioned ― even if you’re not in my class ― I’m always here.”

   With a deep love for English and a devotion to her students, West High is lucky to have her.  Please give a warm welcome to Ms. Kim.

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