My name is Nicole Waddell, and this is my second year as a classroom teacher. I couldn't be more excited for this chapter of my life! I am blessed to be a part of the Willard East family and to be your teacher. I can't wait to learn all about you, but first, I want to tell you about me.
When not teaching, I love spending time with my family. I have a husband, Jamie, of five years and two little boys. Beckett is 3 and Dax is 3 months. I love being outdoors—taking walks, being in the water, going to baseball games. Volleyball is my favorite hobby, and I play on a team throughout the year. I do graphic design on the side and am passionate about photography. My parents and younger sister live in Platte City, Missouri where I am from. I am very close to them and my sister is one of my best friends. It’s hard not being in the same town, but we usually see each other twice a month.
In 2011, I graduated from the University of Missouri-Columbia's School of Journalism with an emphasis in magazine design. I married my husband in June 2012, then we made the move to Springfield in August. He started as a teacher and coach at Willard High School, and I got a job as a creative coordinator at 417 Magazine. A couple years went by, and I realized it wasn't what I was meant to do for the rest of my life. I loved my time there, but my true passion was with children and being a teacher. I completed an online program and did my student teaching while working at the magazine and got my license in October 2015. I was hired as the computer teacher at Willard North and started in January for the remainder of the year.
MU's Journalism School and my three and a half years at the magazine were some of the most wonderful and inspiring years of my life. I learned so much, and I know I can utilize it all to be the best teacher I can be. No doubt curriculum is important—math, reading—it is necessary and makes your children even brighter and more capable of doing great things. My goal is to also teach beyond that. I want students to leave my class more caring, respectful and independent. I want to teach them the power of being kind and doing good. I can't wait to kick off a year of many firsts!