First Grade Teachers


Thank you for letting me be a part of this wonderful, energetic, and life fulfilling team! I am very excited!

I am a first-born child to Chinese immigrants who migrated to San Francisco. My parents did not want me or my siblings to lose our Chinese identity while growing up in America. They believe knowing the language is being part of who we are as Chinese people. We were enrolled in Saturday Chinese school and every time we got home, EVERYTHING was in Chinese, including the television shows we watched! This tactic worked out for my brothers and I because we are all dual language speakers.

I am a product of the San Francisco Unified School District (SFUSD); I went to Garfield Elementary, Marina Middle School, and Galileo Academy of Science and Technology. I attended California State University, Hayward (now known as Eastbay), and graduated with a B.A. in Liberal Studies. Why Liberal Studies? I once tutored middle school students afterschool and they told me I would be a good teacher, because I was patient and I made learning fun. Believe it or not, I took their statement literally!

I volunteered at Chinese Education Center Elementary School (CEC) during 2002-2004. I read and tutored small groups of students. Through 2004-2006, I was a CBET Site Coordinator, a program offered by SFUSD to provide a certificated teacher to teach parents English. And in the beginning of 2006, I decided to become an elementary substitute teacher for SFUSD. I have substituted at many locations in the district. Since subbing, my passion to become a classroom teacher urged me to enter the credential program.

I graduated from the San Francisco State University Credential Program with a Cantonese Bilingual Credential in December 2009. While in the program, I taught students with Mrs. Miriam Fong and Mrs. Jennie Lee. Mrs. Miriam Fong is a teacher at CEC, an elementary school for Asian new comer students to learn survival English for a year. This program is to prevent these specific students from culture and language shock once they immigrate to the United States. I used Cantonese to teach English to the students. Mrs. Jennie Lee is a teacher at West Portal Elementary School. She is a Kindergarten and 1st grade teacher for West Portal’s Chinese Immersion Program. I was able to learn the ins and outs of the immersion program.


Growing up in Toronto, my parents dragged me to Chinese school on the weekends starting at a very young age. In retrospect, I am grateful that I not only learned one more language but also kept my cultural heritage. As I grew older, my love for the Chinese language and culture grew resulting in me taking more Chinese courses in university and studying abroad in Hong Kong and Beijing. Now, I am very happy to use my language skills to teach children to be bilingual and bi-literate in an exciting, fun, and engaging immersion environment.

 Since my parents are both educators, my interest in teaching began early on. Throughout high school, I volunteered to read with children and to help them with their homework. My love for working with children continued as I attended Cornell University where I studied psychology and Asian studies. I later moved to San Francisco and pursued my teaching credential and Masters in Elementary Education.  I started teaching Kindergarten in 2011 and fell in love.  It is such an honor and an incredible experience time and time again to watch the students come in as uncertain preschool grads, some not even knowing a single word of Chinese, and guide them to learn and blossom throughout the year.  In my spare time, I enjoy spending time with my husband and two sons, taking walks, reading books, watching movies, listening to music, and of course, working with children.

I strongly believe that a good learning experience is built on a collaborative effort amongst the parents, child, and teacher. I am excited and looking forward to the work and growth we will all accomplish this year! Please feel free to contact me via my district email or in person after school.



Hi, I am Daisy Zhao. I was born and raised in Taishan Guangdong, China. Influenced by the TV dramas and movies of Hong Kong and mainland China, in addition to Toysan, I also speak fluent Cantonese and Mandarin. I immigrated to San Francisco with my family in my twenties. As a first immigrant generation, I learned that language is the key to starting a new life in a new environment. I went to City College as a second language learner and later on, I obtained my AA degree there. I transferred to San Francisco State University and received my bachelor's degree in Child and Adolescent Development. Then I completed my teacher credential program at the same school. Before working at CIS, I worked as a bilingual paraeducator at Gordon J. Lau Elementary School for 5 years, as a first grade teacher at Starr King Elementary School for a year as well as a K-12 substitute teacher for a while. 

In my free time, I love to listen to relaxing music and stay with my family. It is my great honor to work at CIS! I can’t wait to meet all the teachers, students, and families. 

This page was last updated on August 12, 2023