Our Teachers

Our teachers are the heart and soul of our program.

They are committed to supporting our students in their faith and in their studies. The teachers at AWLS are all active in our church community.

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Seth Herrmann

Principal, 7th-8th grade teacher

Education:
B.S. in Education, Masters Degree: Leadership and Innovation
Experience:
I am entering my 15th year in education. I spent six years in South Chicago, eight years in North Milwaukee, and now begin year 15 here in Houston. I have held leadership positions as athletic director, head coach, middle school team leader, events coordinator, and assistant principal.
Personal Philosophy:
I believe that every child can learn, but they first must know they are loved. The adage goes, “They don’t care how much you know, until they know how much you care.” Every child is capable, and they all can become exceptional learners. As an educator, it is my personal goal to show each individual how much they are valued and that their limits are only defined by their expectations. Together we will learn from our failures, but we will not be defined by them. We will celebrate our successes, but we will not settle. Every day presents us with the opportunity to be better than we were yesterday.
Personal Interests:
I love spending time with my family, being outdoors, watching sports, and having meaningful conversations. I enjoy meeting new people, developing relationships, and sharing the gospel message of Jesus Christ.
Favorite Bible Verse:
"I am not ashamed of the gospel, because it is the power of God that brings salvation to everyone who believes." Romans 1:16

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Candice Learman

Early Childhood Director and PreK-4 Teacher

Education
Bachelor’s degree in Early Childhood Education
Experience:
3 years Early Childhood Director
8 years teaching experience
Favorite Thing about Teaching Young Children:
I love having the opportunity to teach children about their Savior everyday! It also brings me joy to watch their faces light up when they learn or try something for the first time!
Favorite Bible Verse:
“I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.” Philippians 4:13

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Justin Wiechmann

Grades 5-8 Math and History. Grades 5-6 Homeroom

Education
Bachelors of Science in Education from Martin Luther College  Masters of Science in Education from Martin Luther College
Experience
Three years of teaching elementary school in Salem, Oregon.  Eleven years of teaching middle school and high school in South Korea, Hawaii, and Wisconsin.
Personal Philosophy Statement
I feel that success within a school goes beyond the classroom.  A successful school works at developing relationships with both students and parents.  Creating a family environment for children to grow and develop together.
Personal Interests
Spending time with our daughters, traveling, and watching sports.
Favorite Bible Verse
For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.  Jeremiah 29:11

PLANBOOK LINK

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Anna Gartner

4th Grade Teacher

Education:
BS in Education - Martin Luther College
Experience:
6 weeks of student teaching in 7th and 8th grade at New Ulm Middle School, MN
10 weeks of student teaching in 7th - 12th grade at Illinois Lutheran HS in Crete, IL
Two years as a 6th grade teacher and 5-8 Language Arts and Literature teacher at Bethlehem Lutheran in Menomonee Falls, WI
Personal Philosophy Statement:
My personal philosophy is to use the gifts and talents that I have as an individual to glorify God and to spread his message to the world! It is my goal as a teacher to help my students recognize their own strengths (and weaknesses), and realize their potential and ability to do the same.
Personal Interests:
I love spending time with my husband and family, drinking coffee, running, reading and writing, and exploring local attractions and restaurants!
Favorite Bible Verse:
John 16:33 I have told you these things so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! For I have overcome the world.

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Raquel Freese

3rd Grade Teacher

Education:
B.S. in Education- Elementary Education and Vocal Music (2021)
Experience: 
Elementary Student Teaching- 6 weeks at Minnesota New Country School in Henderson MN 2nd and 3rd Grade, 10 weeks at Trinity Lutheran School in Brillion WI 3rd and 4th Grade (Spring of 2019)
6-8th Grade Teacher at Holy Trinity Lutheran School in Wyoming, MI (2019-2020 school year)
Music Student Teaching- 6 weeks at Northside Elementary School in St. James, MN K-5 General Music, 10 weeks at Winnebago Lutheran Academy in Fond du Lac, WI Grades 9-12 Choir and Music (Fall of 2020)
Personal Philosophy Statement:
All Christians have the joy of knowing that we are redeemed children of God! This knowledge informs my self-identity as well as the way that I view others. It also empowers me to live according to God's will and spread his Gospel. I hope to teach this to all of my students as well.
Personal Interests:
I play piano, organ, guitar, and sing. I also have a collection of many other instruments that I hope to learn to play someday. I enjoy reading, going on walks, and playing board games with friends and family.
Favorite Bible Verse:
"But for you who revere my name, the sun of righteousness will rise with healing in its rays. And you will go out and frolic like well-fed calves." Malachi 4:2

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Amber Hildebrandt

2nd Grade Teacher

Education:
B.S. in Education - University of Houston
Experience:
This is my 6th year teaching at Abiding Word.
Personal Philosophy Statement:
I believe that everyone has a story to tell. Your story makes you unique. However, the story of Christ and his love for us is what drives our lives and my classroom.
Personal Interests:
I am happily married to my husband Brandon of 13 years, and we have three spunky kiddos; Charlotte, Anabelle, and Luke. In my free time I love reading, cooking, and drinking coffee. My favorite subjects growing up were Science, History, and recess of course!
Favorite Bible Verse:
"Be still and know that I am God." Psalm 46:10

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Maria Tomassetti

1st Grade Teacher

Education:
B.S. in Education- Martin Luther College (2020)
Experience:
6 Weeks of Student Teaching in 3rd Grade- GFW Elementary in Gibbon, MN
10 Weeks of Student Teaching in 1st and 2nd Grade- Good Shepherd Lutheran Omaha, NE
Personal Philosophy Statement:
My personal philosophy is to be a servant of Christ! Through my duties as a servant, I am able to teach, share, and watch God’s lambs grow through His Word as they prepare for their future as a child of God!
Personal Interests:
Hiking, adventuring new places, being outside, drinking coffee, and spending time with family and friends
Favorite Bible Verse:
“The grass withers and the flowers fall, but the word of our God endures forever.” Isaiah 40:8

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Kari Freiberg

Kindergarten Teacher

Education:
B.S. in Education- Martin Luther College (2015)
Experience:
6 weeks of student teaching in 3rd grade- GFW Elementary School
10 weeks of student teaching in Kindergarten- Salem Lutheran School
Personal Philosophy Statement:
My goal is that each student feels loved by their Savior, by me, and by their peers. Students will grow academically, emotionally, and most importantly spiritually.
Personal Interests:
I enjoy getting outside and being active through running and hiking. I also enjoy crafts and painting!
Favorite Bible Verse:
"'Whether you turn to the right or to the left, your ears will hear a voice behind you, saying, 'This is the way; walk in it.'” Isaiah 30:21

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Faith Brown

School Administrative Assistant

Education:
Graduated from Abiding Word and Luther Prep and attended (some) college at UofH
Experience:
Experienced Domestic Engineer and Abiding Word mom of 6
Personal Philosophy:
See a need, fill a need! Let's get organized and get the job done well.
Personal Interests:
Volunteering at church, my family, art, museums of all kinds, axe throwing for fun
Favorite Bible Verse:
"`For I know the plans I have for you,' declares the Lord, 'plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.'" Jeremiah 29:11

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