My name is Brendan Agnew. I’m the lead teacher in the Discoverers preschool (3-4 year-old) classroom, and I have been working at Middle Earth since June of 2009. My wife, Mabry, also works at Middle Earth, in the Adventurers mobile infant room, and our daughter is in Ms. Morgan’s Wanderer’s room. We’ve been a Middle Earth family most of our lives, as not only did Ms. Mabry and I both attend as children, but so did my sister, Bronwyn.
I come from a family of teachers (my sister, my mom, her mother, and my paternal grandparents) and believe that quality education is integral to building a better future for our children.
What are my hobbies?
I enjoy reading, both to myself and to the children, and gravitate toward “genre” fiction (fantasy, sci-fi, horror, etc.) for my own enjoyment, though I also have a love of history – particularly that of medieval Western Europe. I’m a passionate film lover, and enjoy writing about movies almost as much as watching them, as well as discussing them on podcasts. I also love taking my greyhound, Alistair, for 5k runs when the weather is nice. . . Or when it’s not particularly nice, and he’s just been cooped up too long.
In the community, I’ve been active in the Norman Medieval Faire since my teenage years, and ran the Arthurian Order of Avalon performance and education group (the one responsible for the Human Chessboard) for several years before stepping down to start our family.
What is my education?
Following high school, I initially attended the University of Oklahoma, but soon found out that my chosen major wasn’t actually what I wanted. After switching to full time work to help support Ms. Mabry as she finished graduate school, and discovering my passion for Early Childhood Education here at Middle Earth, I began taking classes in my current field at Oklahoma City Community College. I currently hold a Certificate of Mastery in Early Childhood Education and intend on continuing my education in this field well into the future.
My perspectives in this area are that children learn best when challenged with respect and supported by love in an environment that is both engaging and secure. I love that Middle Earth requires best practice and perspectives like Parenting With Love and Logic that are supported by research in the field. I also love that Middle Earth is so family-focused and supportive of those from all different types of backgrounds and family structures.
What are my goals and dreams?
Apart from preparing my class for pre-K, my goals as a teacher are to help Middle Earth grow and flourish in whatever small way that I can, so that the children here now will have the same fondness and appreciation for it when they are grown that I do myself. I’d also love to see even more childcare centers with passionate emphasis on quality care and education for children. If I had a single professional dream, it would be to see education infrastructure in this country to support children from early childhood all the way through high school with best practice and quality teaching.
On the subject of personal goals, I just hope to stay in decent enough shape so that I can keep up with my daughter when she learns to run. . .