Steven Vande Griend grew up in Iowa along with five brothers.
Steven received his Bachelor of Arts in Education from Dordt
College in Sioux Center, Iowalocated within an hours drive of
Sioux City, Iowa, and Sioux Falls, South Dakota.
He has taught fifth and sixth grades in Indiana, Louisiana and
Washington. Steven currently teaches fifth and sixth grade
through a system of loopingwhere he stays with the same
students for two years.
Steven says that he has always liked being in the classroom
environment, a feeling that started when he was an elementary
school student. I always felt that the class was a good place
to be, he said. Being the youngest in his family had its
advantages as well where teaching was concernedhe often
had to watch his nieces and nephews, so at an early age he
developed a knack for handling a lot of children at one time.
Outside the classroom, Steven enjoys working with children in
both music and drama. This includes directing plays, musicals
and choral productions. His interest in music came to life
through his admiration of his high school choral director, who
was also his English teacher.
When we had English class, we had it in the choral room,
Steven said. The way he set up the room made it fun, and he
was really excited about what he was doing. So I always make
my room a fun place for kids to be.
When not teaching, Steven takes pleasure from traveling,
cooking, singing, reading, rollerblading and going to the
In January 1995, Steven achieved National Board Certification
from the National Board for Professional Teaching Standards.
As one of the first recipients of National Board Certification,
Steven was invited to a reception at the White House in
As of September 2001, Steven is still teaching at Lynnwood,
expecting a new group of fifth graders.
Overall, my goal for students in my classroom is to become a
better citizen of our school, community, nation and world. By
respecting our learning environment and the hard work and
efforts of others, we can achieve a goal of becoming lifelong
learners, he said.