A warm smile welcomes students in Miss Patricia Brackett’s class. I interviewed her on an appropriately sunny day to learn more about the special person behind the smile.  Miss Brackett is new this year to the Blessed Sacrament School Community. She teaches Religion for Grades 5-8.

Miss Brackett is originally from Raymond, NH.  For those of you who have no idea where Raymond, NH is… it is near Hampton Beach.  She attended St. Joseph’s College in Standish, Maine where she majored in Theology and minored in History and Secondary Education.  She received her Masters in Education from Northeastern University.  She taught her first year out of college at St. Dominic Academy in Auburn, Maine.  She taught Grades 7, 8 and 9.  She had always wanted to live in Massachusetts so friends encouraged her to look for teaching opportunities in Western Massachusetts.  She truly believes as she says that “God led me here.”  And so, she applied to Blessed Sacrament School and the rest is history.  She also teaches Religion at St. Mary’s Academy in Longmeadow.   Miss Brackett loves to work. She not only works at two schools, she also is a hostess at a local restaurant.

Miss Brackett grew up in a small town. To her, Holyoke is the big city in comparison. She loves learning about the diversity of our city and different cultures. It has been a wonderful, eye-opening experience for her.

When she isn’t working, what is most important to Miss Brackett is spending time with family and friends.  She is always visiting her mom Suzanne in New Hampshire as well as her sisters, Sarahanne and Joyce, and her niece Harper, all who she adores.

Miss Brackett had a unique journey to her Catholic faith.  Her parents who were Catholic believed that their children should decide on their own religion when they were ready. When she was a senior in high school, she made the decision to become Catholic.  She not only became Catholic, but she eventually became a Eucharistic Minister in college.

I think her journey makes Miss Brackett an exceptional Religion teacher. She teaches her students to explore their faith, have their own opinions and choose their own path. This journey is one we all need to take with the proper guidance.  She is just that guide.  She has been through the journey herself and succeeded in figuring out her path.  She brings that valuable experience to her students.

Her classroom is a like no other…seriously.  She creates all her own lessons. Instead of using standard textbooks, she researches and develops her own standard-based lessons. She tells me that it is a very time-consuming, but worthwhile process.  She feels by doing this she delivers the best possible lesson. She is very creative with her curriculum. She infuses technology into her curriculum wherever possible. She is an expert in all things Google and is well-versed in technology in general.  For example, she had the students create an Instagram post on paper of a saint for All Saints Day following the proper guidelines for a post and even including hashtags.  I see a Religion blog in our sights.  Her favorite subjects are the Old and New Testament and relating scripture to current events and real world experiences.  Her presentations are in PowerPoint and she posts lessons to the online portal regularly. She uses Quizlet and iPads for study time. All her lessons are meeting with success.

I taught CCD for over 10 years. I would love to take her class. I am confident I would learn a lot.  I think we would all enjoy learning from a warm, welcoming, intelligent and dedicated teacher whose true passion is teaching Religion. It is crystal clear she loves teaching at Blessed Sacrament School.   I look forward to hearing about her creative lessons and I challenge others to be equally creative in their endeavors.  She has made me think I need to step up my creative game.  Game on.  When you have a chance, I hope you will give Miss Patricia Brackett a heartfelt Blessed Sacrament Community welcome.