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Foreign Language Tutors

Andrew Banker

  • High Chinese I

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!

Sherelyn Chellin

  • Middle School American Sign Language I

Sherelyn Chellin is a licensed pastor and has her BS degree in Family Counseling from Northwest College. She has worked in children’s ministry for over 30 years. She is a certification ASL interpreter and has taught American Sign Language for 15 years.???????

Mari Rodriguez

  • Middle School Spanish
  • High School Spanish I
  • High School Spanish II
  • High School Spanish III with a CLEP option

I am a graduate of Christ for the Nations Institute Mexico City with a degree in Biblical Studies and Missions. After completing my Biblical Studies, I served as a missionary in Argentina and worked with street children. I returned from Argentina to finish my Missions certification. Upon completing all of my studies, I went to the Philippines where I served as a missionary alongside Family Circus, a ministry reaching the children and youth of Davao City.

I have been married for thirteen years and have three children that God has given me the privilege to homeschool. My husband and I were children’s pastors at Grove Christian Center for four years. The past five years I have taught elementary Spanish, and Spanish I and II at WEST. It has been a blessing to get to know my students and build relationships with many families. I’m also a private tutor for students that want to present the Spanish CLEP test.

I enjoy teaching children and have been able to hear not only the students who have attended my classes communicating in Spanish but their parents as well, which gives me great pride. I love to teach my students not just the language, but also the important things that go along with it such as the food, dances, and songs from Latin American culture. It is an honor to teach at West and I am excited for the adventure that awaits us in each class!

Penny Beard
  • American Sign Language I 
  • American Sign Language II

Ms. Penny Beard was born deaf and raised in Washington State. She moved to Minnesota 11 years ago. She graduated with a bachelor of Social work (BSW) at Rochester Insititute Technology in Rochester, New York 24 years ago. She has been teaching ASL classes at North Central Univeristy (NCU) for 9 years. 2017 - 2018 is her first year teaching WEST PSEO, and she loves it! Her passion is to continue teaching ASL classes. She is studying for the Certified Minister thru the Global University. Her hobbies are reading, paintings, handwritings, travelings and artworks. She is married to an amazing deaf man, and she is a proud grandma with 5 beautiful grandkids.