Retiring german teacher offers wisdom for students

Susanne Kanning. Art by Aditi Jain

Aditi Jain

Susanne Kanning. Art by Aditi Jain

Mireya Avalos, Reporter

With 30 years under her belt, Frau Kanning is entering a new life of retirement.

German teacher Susanne Kanning has been teaching at Inglemoor since 1990. Her position as a Viking was her first job out of college and turned out to be a lifelong career. She said she has been dedicated to her work and to making connections with students. 

“I love sharing the German language and culture with my students,” Kanning said. “I like to think that I may have helped motivate them to do these things. I hope that my current students also get to Germany at some point in their lives to experience the language and the culture firsthand.”

Although Kanning said that the school year is too short, she utilizes the time she has by creating fun and engaging activities for her students. 

Every year, I have had the pleasure of working with really wonderful students. My fondest memories are of going to German Immersion Camps every spring, the many trips to Germany I have taken with students, our silly competitions and games that we would do in class, singing silly songs and making jokesin German, of coursewatching my students interact and become life-long friends,” Kanning said.

Sophomore Finn Meyer, her student for two years in her German 200 and 300 courses, said that Kanning always made time for her students and was continuously devoted to their learning.

“[Kanning] was always so helpful in the classroom, she helped me get a grasp on the rules and more confusing aspects of German,” Meyer said. “She made time for all my questions and approached them all in a kind and supportive way.”

Kanning said that she decided to take some time off work to travel to Germany with her family. In doing so she said she learned a lot about the German language and got a better understanding of the culture.

In college, she studied abroad in Germany and said she found her calling. 

“I always had it in the back of my head that I could be a teacher,” said Kanning. “But I never thought I would be a German teacher until after I had been an exchange student there.”

On entering retirement, Kanning said that she will miss the community at Inglemoor, from her students to the staff. The environment made it easy for growth within her teaching.

“I feel like I improved every year as a teacher because I was always attending workshops and conferences to get new ideas and methods,” Kanning said. “Inglemoor High School is a great place to work, which is why I never left until now!” 

Kanning said that she plans to travel throughout the U.S. and abroad. She has plans for many hiking, biking and skiing adventures in her retirement. 

As Kanning departs into a new life of relaxation, she leaves Inglemoor with some words of encouragement.

“Remember to have fun,” Kanning said. “It is so easy to get wrapped up in everything that has to get done that we sometimes forget to enjoy the here and now, simply playing and having a little fun. Learning can be a game, so never stop playing!”