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Mr. Andrew Banker To All Instructors

I grew up in Beijing, China for most of my childhood (13 of those 18 years). My parents worked as missionaries there, passing on Prayer Resolution counseling tools to Chinese christians. During my years in Beijing, I experienced my education through homeschooling, a 1-room schoolhouse homeschool-hybrid, and a christian international school. I have studied Mandarin through private tutors, high-school teachers, and university professors throughout my middle-school, high-school, and college years. My best teachers, however, were always the people on the Beijing streets and subways.
The Chinese language is beautifully complex, holding layer after layer of symbolism and culture in each character and phrase. I love sharing the depth of the Chinese language with all who get to know me.
I am recently married (yay!) and currently finishing my last year of university. I am completing my degrees in Education and Chemistry at Hamline University in St. Paul. Chemistry is a fascinating field of study, but empowering students through education is what really gets me going. Being a teacher is my chance to show students that they are worthy of care and that they are capable of doing difficult things.
In the classroom we will be talking to each other, making videos, performing skits, and writing on our own. I focus on community building so that students can feel comfortable learning alongside each other. In learning a new language, mistakes are what bring the best opportunities for us to master the content. Being comfortable with our own and others’ mistakes is therefore a big priority of mine. They give us the chance to reflect on how we are learning. Anyone taking a class with me will learn that high standards and reflective learning are my two big values as a teacher. This is how I also learn something every day I teach. I am excited to be on this adventure with you at WEST!

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