Introducing Educational Development Director, JD Wyneken
Dr. JD Wyneken, Pacific Learning Academy’s Education Development Director, is a talker – a talker about history, education, philosophy, airplanes, the fine art and science of baseball, you name it. As he likes to put it, “so much of life is about conversation and connection between people, sharing and reflecting.” That means JD puts equal value on listening as well. “We so often don’t know what we don’t know about others, about almost any subject, even ones we are allegedly ‘experts’ in,” says JD, a professional Ph.D historian by training. “The stories we can learn every day are remarkable, as are the innovative ways in which we can apply the lessons we learn from them to every facet of our lives.” Because of this, JD calls himself a HALF—a Historian Always Looking Forward.
With an extensive background in academic research and award-winning teaching, JD’s new role with the Academy has him focusing on the present in order to shape the future in how we engage in and develop academic curriculum, build professional development for our instructors, and build relationships and connections in our community.
JD’s job as Education Development Director is to seek new and improved ways to serve our students and their families so we can continue to anticipate and meet their individually unique needs.
JD joined the Academy as an instructor in 2016 and has worked with dozens of students who needed tutoring or credit class instruction in history and language arts. As JD will tell you, every one of those students—and, therefore, their classes or tutoring time—have been unique. “That is what makes one-on-one education so great,” he says enthusiastically. “It’s an opportunity for both student and instructor to see what makes the other unique in their views of the world and the subject at hand, and then to craft together a path forward to a level of mastery of the subject the student hasn’t achieved before.” JD has seen a great deal of such success with his students and sees the same happening with other Academy instructors and their students. “We have an unbelievably talented pool of instructors here, all of whom genuinely enjoy facilitating positive learning environments and strategies for their students.”
Part of JD’s role is to stay connected to our instructors and help them become even better at their jobs.
As a former full-time instructor, JD can relate to their challenges and help them with their approaches to curriculum, projects, and instruction. He also helps instructors identify and use educational resources to improve their classes and better serve their students. His active mentorship program helps with this, while also helping instructors identify and strengthen their own desired areas for growth. This involves a lot of—you guessed it—listening and talking. “My favorite things!” JD says with a laugh.
Pacific Learning Academy is a one-on-one school offering single courses and dual enrollment, as well as full-time middle and high school. Pacific Learning Academy is Washington State Approved via the Office of Superintendent of Public Instruction (OSPI — see listings HERE) and an Accredited private school via AdvancED/Northwest Accreditation Commission (NWAC). High School coursework is approved by the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA). We also offer tutoring in all subjects from 6th to 12th grade, including test prep, either in-home or local libraries across the Eastside (Issaquah, Sammamish, etc…). See more at www.PacificLearningAcademy.com.