Dr. La Vergne Lester Thatch is the founder and director of The Education STREaM, Inc.
She began her teaching career in 1991, in the New York Public School System, as a paraprofessional. In 1993, Dr. Thatch became a secondary-level science and mathematics teacher. She planned instructional strategies that were appropriate to the needs and strengths of her students. Dr. Thatch developed and facilitated workshops in high school Mathematics, Science and ESL/Bi-Lingual workshops for parents in Mathematics.
As Dr. Thatch worked diligently in the classroom with her students, over an eight year period, one of her greatest accomplishments was the development of The Thatch Method. Within The Thatch Method, the teacher and student roles are interchangeable. This effective method allows for a deeper level of science and mathematics learning.
Dr. Thatch is known for her ability to go beyond the student’s difficulties in order to help him or her to achieve their academic goals. Throughout her career, she has worked tirelessly to build educational environments that truly foster learning.
Dr. Thatch played an integral role in establishing and growing the online version of Texas Teacher Reading Academies (OTRA).
Dr. Thatch earned her Bachelors of Engineering from Pratt Institute (1991) and Masters of Engineering degree from City College of New York (1998) in Mechanical Engineering, Specialist Diploma in School Administration and Supervision from Queens College New York (2000). Doctoral degree in Science and Mathematics Education with a specialization in Physics Education from The University of Texas at Austin (2008).
She enjoys reading, writing and crafting. Dr. Thatch currently resides in Florida with her husband Stephen and their daughter Elke.
I helped build Sophia and the team of talented people working together to create new ways to approach education. Sophia is a place where everyone can participate in teaching and learning, and where the traditional boundaries of schools and classrooms will fade into history. I joined Sophia in 2009 to help answer a question: “If we could create an online learning experience today, in the world of Facebook, YouTube and Wikipedia … what would it be like?” What a great way to start a company! I am proud of what the Sophia team has created. Join Sophia. Help someone learn. It makes for a better world.
Educators often ask students to think of what they are passionate about. The idea behind this is that if a young learners can discover their true interests they may be able to better define their life goals and begin down a path that will leave them happy and fulfilled. As I progressed through my 11th year of teaching, I applied for a new job and was asked to think what I was passionate about. The firs and most obvious thing that came to mind; family. I kept thinking over a few weeks by looking at the things I really enjoy and patterns in my career. What I discovered is that I am passionate about challenges. Challenges keep me focused. They give me something to work on and think about when the monotony of the day-to-day life seems to slow me down. For me, challenges can appear in many forms. They can be physical challenges, educational challenges, or career challenges. But for me, they can all be molded into the same basic pattern. 1. They need to seem large. I once heard a graduation address where the speaker said "If someone tells you that the challenge you set for yourself is too big, you know you're on the right track." 2. They must require planning and preparation. The planning and the preparation are what makes the challenge fulfilling. 3. Failure must be an option. If not, then the challenge is not big enough. Let's be clear here. You have to assume you will meet your challenge, but if everybody can do it, it's not a challenge. Here's the cool thing...once you meet one challenge, another bunch of them open up. And the process starts all over.
I'm the Founder and co-creator of Sophia and I love to create new things. I have a deep passion for education and technology, and I spend a lot of time thinking about how they could come together more effectively. I earned my bachelor's degree in U.S. History from the University of Wisconsin and my MBA from the University of Minnesota. I'm also the proud father of three daughters who give me a lot of great feedback on how to improve Sophia. I hope you'll send me your thoughts and ideas about Sophia. You can also feel free to share your thoughts on education, technology, American history (my personal passions are presidential and immigration history), music, songwriting, or baseball. I’d love to hear from you. - Don