Kimberly Fischer

This school year marks Kimberly Fischer’s second with the Agar-Blunt-Onida school district. Last year, Fischer taught first grade in Blunt. This year, she accepted Elementary Principal Amber Mikkelsen’s call to teach fifth grade in Onida.

“I was happy to make the change, to help the school out, and also a chance to try something different,” said Fischer.

The Castlewood native attended South Dakota State University where she earned her degree in early childhood and elementary education. “I’ve always enjoyed being in classrooms and working with children,” said Fischer. “I had some experiences in high school and decided ‘this is what I should do.’” She says that one of the things that appealed to her about earning elementary certification was the option to teach in all subject areas instead of focusing on a single subject area.

Fischer says that she had a positive first year with her six first grade students. “Those will always be my first graders.” In her fifth grade classroom, Fischer is finding “how independent and grown up they are” surprising. “First grade and fifth grade are such different grades but I’ve really enjoyed teaching both.”

Along with teaching first grade at Blunt, Fischer taught math to grades 3-4. She’ll be continuing that specialty in Onida. “I had a good math methods professor,” said Fischer about taking on that role. Onida upper elementary students rotate among Jessica Rausch for English Language Arts, Tom Moore for science, and Fischer for math.

Fischer is working toward earning a Master of Science Degree in Education Technology through Dakota State University. “As a new teacher, I’m learning all kinds of things from other teachers,” said Fischer. “Everyone has been really good about trying new ideas, too. If I mention trying something from my Master’s course work, whether it’s related to technology or just to teaching and learning, everyone is willing to try new things. If I see a new idea, I’ll give it a try so I can learn how I can improve it or do it better. I figure the more I learn, the better my teaching can be.”

Although she doesn’t count hunting and fishing – outdoor activities that draw many to the area – among her hobbies, Fischer does consider herself an outdoors person. “I enjoy spending time in the outdoors.” She enjoys living in Onida and finds the feel of the community and school comparable to the small town she grew up in. “I’ve enjoyed my time here,” said Fischer. “I plan to stick around.”

Fischer grew up in a family of six. “My parents live in Castlewood. My brother is in grad school and my sister an undergraduate at SDSU. My twin sister lives in Milwaukee, Wisconsin.”

“I’ve never had any doubt that teaching is what I should do, that this is what I was meant to do,” said Fischer. “I enjoy learning and teaching and passing along what I’ve learned.”