Students Rise with Mrs. Sunset


Valeria Monsalve, Staff Writer

Teaching freshmen how to think like a college student is not an easy task, but Mrs. Sunset makes it seem like a walk in a park.

Sunset has been a teacher for 15 years, with ten of those years here at Santaluces. She currently teaches World Geography for freshmen and AP Human Geography, which she says is “the most interesting class [she’s] ever experienced.” Mrs. Sunset’s favorite part about teaching AP Human is watching her students develop throughout the school year.

“They walk in as regular 9th graders and walk out as college students,” said Sunset.

Even as a child, Mrs. Sunset enjoyed playing school and pretending to teach students.

“I’ve just always known that this is what I want to do,” she said.

In addition to playing school, she also liked to bake, read and go camping when she was kid. As an adult, she enjoys crafts such as painting and home decorating and still finds pleasure in reading. She finds it impossible to pick just one favorite book but says that her favorite is usually the one she is currently reading (which is, as of right now, “Killing Lincoln”). She graduated from the University of Northern Colorado and majored in history.

Mrs. Sunset loves to travel and experience new places.

“I love to see the cultures, see the churches, try the food and hear the language,” she says.

She has visited Alaska, Hawaii, Mexico, the Caribbean and ten countries in Europe. Furthermore, every school year she has some of her students follow her lead and takes them to visit European countries. This past spring break they visited England, France, and Italy.

“I encourage my students to broaden their horizons through travelling and to appreciate the differences in culture,” she says.

In addition to just simply visiting places, Mrs. Sunset has also lived in Denver, Colorado, where she grew up, Toronto, Canada, Rochester, New York and here in Florida.

As a teacher, she places students in tables to encourage group collaboration and uses Cornell Notes and video clips to help her students process the information. She uses her AP Human Geography class to prepare her students for any future AP class they will take during high school and any college class they will take passed that.

Mrs. Sunset is one of the nicest teachers I have and genuinely cares about her students,” said Ilisha Strassler, a sophomore in Mrs. Sunset’s AP Human class. “I am so thankful I was able to have her as a teacher.”